Today I am excited to feature another North Dakotan! Abbie and Cody live about 50 miles from me and they raise beef cattle. Abbie shared with me one of her favorite “hot dish” recipes. If you aren’t familiar with Midwestern vernacular, a hot dish is essentially just a casserole. This hot dish featuring beef and rice and is such a simple weeknight meal! Enjoy!
BEEF: CODY & ABBIE SMITH
When did you start farming? What brought you into farming?
Cody & I got married June 2015 – we reside on his family farm outside of Monango, ND, we raise beef cows & grow alfalfa along with various other crops. Cody started farming when he was sixteen he was given opportunity to rent some land from his grandpa and has been farming ever since. Growing up Cody did many chores around the farm, he particularly remembers feeding cows & running grain cart. Not much has changed on the farm since Cody was a boy but we have recently put in a new well & energy free waterers, we have also re-done all the cattle lots.
What has been the hardest part of farming for you?
We believe the only hard part is the unpredictability with the weather & markets. The most satisfying part of farming is watching the cattle & crops grow, it is great to watch your hard work pay off. We have our cows because we have the pasture ground & we grow alfalfa to feed to our own cows, we also sell to some dairies. The most useful advancement would have to be chemicals. With the better chemicals we are able to control the weeds better and have higher yields.
Any memories you want to share about this feature ingredient?
My favorite memory of beef would have to be the day I realized I was marrying a beef farmer & I would from then on have an endless amount of beef, I would never have to buy from a store again! Cody’s favorite memory about beef would be the first time he saw a big feedlot when he was 10.
What is one message you’d like to get across to the general public about what you do?
Don’t be afraid of what you don’t know. Hormones & chemicals are not as bad as the uneducated make them out to be. Our best advice to anyone interested in farming is focus on the product rather than equipment.
Abbie gave me this fantastic hot dish recipe, I upped the ante by adding wild rice, carrots, and a little cream.. Because everything is better with a little cream, right? It’s the German thing to do.
- 1 pound ground beef
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 cups celery, diced
- 1 cup carrots, diced
- 1 1/2 cups raw rice
- 1/2 cup raw wild rice
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1 can cream of mushroom soup
- 2 cups hot water
- 1 soup can of heavy cream
- salt and pepper to taste
- Shredded cheddar cheese to top
- French's Onions to top (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a large skillet over high heat, brown the ground beef and drain any grease. Add beef to prepared casserole dish.
- Return skillet to stove and add butter, over medium heat saute the onions, celery, and carrots for 5 minutes or until onions are softened. Add the rices and add to casserole dish.
- Add the soy sauce, cream of mushroom soup, hot water, and heavy cream and mix well to incorporate. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Bake at 350 degrees for an hour and a half. Add French's onions (optional) and shredded cheese to the top the last 5 - 10 minutes of cooking.
- Serve and enjoy!
- If you want to cut the cooking time, use pre-cooked rice and bake for 30 minutes.
This post is part of my Thirty Days of Food series where I am writing about food and farming for the entire month of November, to find out more about it all or how to follow along, visit my Thirty Days of Food page to find more great recipes with farmer features!