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GARDEN TIME! Veggies are in full swing, making this a Southerner’s favorite part of summer. Yes folks, all of the heat and humidity are finally worth it when we get to bring in buckets of big juicy tomatoes, squash, and bell peppers. My stomach growls just thinking about it!
I only have a small garden but it still seems to yield more than I could ever use, so I love throwing together recipes like this that help me get as many of those delicious fresh flavors in one bite as possible! This is a simple go to dish, one like our grandmothers would just throw together and not even consider a recipe, but today I’m going to show you how to make a fresh, flavorful, and filling garden skillet with just enough seasonings to enhance all of the flavors without covering any of them up.
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I know I normally go into a long winded story or chat a little bit more, but look at that skillet up there? I’m HUNGRY so lets eat! 🙂
You’ll need: tomatoes, squash, bell pepper, onion, lean ground beef, dried parsley (or fresh) and some kosher salt.
You’ll also need a wee bit of pepper and a scant amount of sugar if you want to make it exactly like I do.
They refused to pose in this picture but hey, we all have our stubborn days, right?
This is an easy recipe to alter based on what you have. Zucchini would be an excellent substitute for squash and if you only have one bell pepper or tomato that will work, too. You can also use ground turkey in place of beef but I have an aversion to ground turkey so don’t look to see me doing that here. But hey, whatever cranks your tractor!
And yes, Kosher salt is awesome. If you have never used it much before, grab some next time you are in the grocery store. This is one of those ingredients that really does make a pow difference and won’t cost you much at all. IF you don’t have kosher salt, table salt will work as well. I don’t ever want you to have to make a special trip to the store when you can make do with what you have on hand!
Let’s get started!
To begin with, place your tomatoes on a baking sheet and put in the oven on “Broil” while you get your beef going, about five minutes or so.
Chop up your onion and place that in the skillet with your ground beef.
Chop the beef up really well and stir over medium heat until nicely browned.
I’m using a mix and chop thingimawhosit from Pampered Chef. I don’t sell pampered chef, I don’t have friends or family who sell it, but I will hunt one of these suckers down to the corners of the earth if I ever need to! This is an awesome tool and I think I’ve bought about eight now. I keep introducing folks to it and giving them away. I love that it can handle the heat so you can continually cook with it without having to keep taking it out and setting it aside. It chops up things really well, too and is dishwasher safe. Am I a salesman or what?But hey, when I find something that is really and truly useful I want you to know about it!
You can buy them from a Pampered Chef person or on Ebay 🙂 Amazon even has them, too (click here) !
Now take your tomatoes out of the oven and the skin should be split.
Set them aside for a minute to cool and then carefully pull a piece of skin until it comes off.
Repeat until they are entirely peeled.
Cut them into wedges and add to your skillet.
NOTE: I’m using lean ground beef so I didn’t have to drain mine before adding the tomatoes.
If you aren’t using lean beef and have grease in your skillet at this step, drain the beef before adding tomatoes.
Chop them up with your thingiemawhosit or a wooden spoon or whatever you grab first from the drawer and continue cooking over medium heat.
Keep in mind these tomatoes are hot and have juice so there may be hot juice involved.
Add your parsley, salt, and pepper (and just a teaspoon of sugar if you really wanna bring out the sweetness of these tomatoes!)
Continue cooking and dicing up the tomatoes for about five minutes, until they are good and juicy and make a sauce of sorts.
While you’re doing this, chop up all of your bell peppers (throwing away the seeds) and squash.
Add in the rest of your veggies.
Cook and stir until squash is lightly translucent and veggies are just tender, but not overcooked or soft.
I know “overcooked” is kind of the Southern way to some folks but that is a holdover from the old days when we really did have to cook the mess out of something in order to make sure it was safe to eat. So when your meemaw cooks you vegetables until they cry uncle, she is just repeating what her meemaw did as a way to make sure the food was safe.
This skillet is BURSTING with flavor!
Serve over hot cooked macaroni noodles or rice.
And if you have time, drop me a “Hidy” in the comments below because I LOVE hearing from you!
- 1-2 pounds lean ground beef
- 2 large garden tomatoes
- 1-2 yellow squash, sliced
- 1-2 bell peppers, chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
- 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Place tomatoes on foil lined baking sheet and put in over under broiler for five to eight minutes, while you get the ground beef going below...
- In large skillet over medium high heat, place ground beef and onion. Chop and stir with wooden spoon until beef is fully browned and onion is tender and translucent, about ten minutes. If not using lean ground beef, drain grease.
- Remove tomatoes from oven while ground beef is cooking and set aside to cool slightly. Once cooled, carefully peel skin off and slice into large wedges.
- Add tomatoes to ground beef and onions in skillet and continue cooking over medium high heat while you stir and chop them up, being careful not to squirt hot juice on yourself.
- Add salt, parsley, black pepper, and sugar (if using sugar). Stir well and cook for about ten minutes.
- Add in squash and bell pepper and stir well. Cook until squash is lightly translucent and bell pepper is just tender, about ten more minutes.
To wish you were someone else is to waste the person you are!