Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Gehacktes mit Hörnli - Swiss Macaroni and Beef Recipe

My husband is half Swiss. His father was from Switzerland and made "Gehacktes mit Hörnli," or Swiss macaroni and beef, for supper quite often while Richard was growing up. It is one of Richard's great mealtime memories. When we were visiting Switzerland in 2007, Richard really wanted to eat it again, but didn't know what it was called. One day Richard's Aunt and Uncle took us on a catered boat ride on Lake Zurich, and Richard told his Uncle about the macaroni and beef dish his Dad used to make that he loved growing up. His Uncle pointed to "Gehacktes mit Hörnli" on the menu, and said Richard's Father loved this dish. Richard ordered it, and loved every bite. When we got back home from Switzerland, our first order of business was to recreate this meal. This is what we came up with. I believe ours is a little 'saucier' than what we had in Switzerland, so it's not an exact replication of the dish. Regardless, our recipe is a comfort-food dish that really warms your heart.

Gehacktes mit Hörnli - Swiss Macaroni and Beef Recipe

3/4 lb extra lean ground beef
1 tsp garlic powder
Salt and pepper
1-1/2 cups of canned plain crushed tomatoes (about half of a 28 oz. can)
1 tbsp sugar
2 cups of dry macaroni pasta
1/4 cup of minced fresh chives

Start a large pot of water on High heat to boil for the macaroni. When boiling, add the macaroni and a dash of salt, and follow the package's cooking instructions.

Brown the ground beef in a large skillet over High heat. Season with garlic powder and then salt and pepper to taste. Really break the beef up with a spatula into very small pieces. Drain off any fat. Reduce heat to Medium and pour the crushed tomatoes into the skillet, add the sugar, and mix it with the ground beef. Heat the meat sauce to a slow boil and then reduce heat to simmer while the macaroni is finishing up.

When the macaroni is done, drain it, and plate it. Top it with a hearty serving of the meat sauce and a handful of freshly minced chives. Serves 2 adults (and one small child). One last note: It's pronounced "hernli."

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