A thawed pack of stew beef was the core from which the meal developed. A box of instant potatoes (not used as planned for an earlier crowd meal) joined in followed by some frozen French-cut and canned regular-cut green beans. A dessert, Pumpkin Toffee Cobbler, had to follow a bit later since we were playing Pictionary for a few hours working up an appetite.
The directions (as closely as I remember) are as follows:
Put the cut stew meat in a large zip top freezer bag, add 1/3 cup olive oil, 3 Tablespoons minced garlic, and 2 teaspoons of salt. Shake and put in ‘frig for at least 2 hours. Remove from the ‘frig and add 1 cup all purpose flour and 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper. Reseal bag and shake to coat meat. In a large soup pot, saute meat in small amount of oil (since there is already oil on the meat), stirring often to prevent burning. When meat is browned, add water (enough to cover by an inch or so), Gravy Master and seasonings to adjust flavors to make gravy. Cover and simmer on low to let meat tenderize and flavors to blend. While this is cooking, make potatoes. You can make them according to directions or as I did. After I decided what to make I found out I didn’t have enough milk (and I was NOT going to the store.) What other dairy products would work? Ah, sour cream. So, 2 cups milk and 1 1/2 cups sour cream since I was making the whole box. The crowd of 10 to feed included a college offensive lineman! And, for a green to add vitamins and color, I found half a bag of frozen French cut green beans…not enough. And in the pantry I found a can of regular cut green beans. Mixed together and seasoned with lemon pepper, there was enough for everyone.
And, then there was dessert. I had all the ingredients in the pantry so it was the perfect choice. And, it is one of the easiest treats to make.
Preheat oven 350˚
1 large can (29 oz) of pumpkin (not pie)
12 oz can of evaporated milk
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 spiced cake mix
2 sticks of butter, melted
2 cups toffee candy bits (i.e. crushed Heath bar)
In a 9 x 13 pan, (preferably glass) mix pumpkin, eggs, milk and brown sugar. Sprinkle dry cake mix evenly over pumpkin mixture. Evenly pour on melted butter. Bake 30 minutes.
Remove from oven, evenly sprinkle toffee candy bits on top. Bake for an additional 20 minutes. Cool completely in pan. Garnish with whipped cream topped with additional toffee bits.