American Chop Suey
by Karen Mussoline

URL Source:
Source: Cook's Country
Course: Main
Cuisine: American
Food Group: Pasta
Serves: 6


12 ounce (3 cups) elbow macaroni
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoon(s) vegetable oil
2 pound(s) 90 percent lean ground beef
1 large onion, chopped fine
1 large green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and chopped fine
3 large celery ribs, chopped fine
2 tablespoon(s) tomato paste
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon(s) red pepper flakes
29 ounce can tomato sauce
14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes (I use fire roasted)
1 cup(s) water
1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated (1/2 cup), plus extra for serving

1. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in Dutch oven. Add pasta and 1 tablespoon salt and cook for 3 minutes. Drain and rinse pasta with cold water. Drain again and set aside.

2. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in now-empty Dutch oven over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add beef, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and cook, breaking up pieces with spoon, until all liquid has evaporated and meat begins to sizzle, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer meat to bowl.

3. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in now-empty Dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add onion, bell pepper, and celery and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until vegetables soften, about 5 minutes. Add tomato paste and cook, stirring constantly, until rust-colored, about 2 minutes. Stir in garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomato sauce, tomatoes, water, and cooked ground beef. Bring to simmer and cook, covered, over low heat, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, about 15 minutes.

4. Off heat, stir in reserved pasta, cover, and let sit until pasta is tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in Parmesan. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve, passing additional Parmesan separately.