I still hate milk. Not sure why, other than it tastes very literally like something that just came out of the stomach of a large animal. I've come around to sloppy joes, though, largely because of this recipe, which came out of the Roanoke Times. The keys here are: a) the dried thyme, which gives the whole dish a nice layered taste; and b) the toasted whole grain buns. And no, I'm not usually one for whole grain buns, either. But what can I say? I think this is one of those dishes where you look at the ingredients separately and shake your head--but when you put them all together? The kids absolutely love it.
Root Beer Sloppy Joes
1 lb. ground sirloin or high grade Angus chuck
1 medium onion finely chopped
2 cloves minced garlic
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup root beer
4-6 whole-grain hamburger buns
- Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Slice the buns in half, lay them face down on the rack, and toast for 4-6 minutes, until just crispy on the insides.
- In a large-nonstick skillet, cook ground sirloin for 4 minutes on medium until the pink is nearly gone. Drain.
- Add the onion and garlic and cook for another 4 minutes, stirring regularly.
- Add the chili powder, thyme, mustard, salt and pepper. Stir.
- Stir in ketchup and root beer. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook 10 minutes or until the sauce thickens.
- Serve on the toasted buns.
Will, who really is becoming more easy-going as an eater: 10
Lucy, who thinks the root beer makes dinner taste like dessert (even though it really doesn't): 10
Jamie, who's taken to eating twelve snacks between 4:00 and 6:00, and then saying he doesn't like my cooking: 7
Ellen, who kind of rebels against anything that seems even vaguely midwestern: 7
Paul, who's not getting any skinnier: 10