Homemade Hamburger Helper Lasagna
In a deep skillet: sauté ground beef (½ lb.) on medium high heat until browned. Drain grease if necessary.
Pour in the chicken stock (2 cups), tomato paste (3 oz or half a small can), onion powder (1 tsp), garlic powder (½ tsp), dried oregano (1 tsp), dried basil (1 tsp) sugar (½ tsp), pepper to taste, and salt (½ tsp).
Chicken stock often has much less (if any) salt/sodium than broth. They can be used interchangeably, but taste test before adding salt, especially if you are using broth.
A note on salt...
Stir broth, tomato paste and seasonings until well blended and increase heat to high for 5 minutes until the liquid has reduced by almost half.
Reduce heat to low, and temporarily remove the pan from the burner to stop the simmer. Add the dry, uncooked Mafalda pasta (2 ½ cups), give a slight stir, followed by 2 cups milk.
Do not overcook it, and do not use higher than medium low heat, as this can curdle the milk.
Once the milk has been added, give a quick stir and return the skillet to the burner.
Simmer, covered, on low heat about 6-7 minutes for al dente, or according to pasta package time.
A note on pasta...
Breaking regular lasagna sheets into 1 inch pieces resembles the pasta also, but note that the cooking time might longer. Refer to package to determine the cooking time for your pasta of choice.
When the pasta is done, remove lid and skillet from heat. Stir in shredded cheese (½ cup total- a blend of cheddar and Parmesan, mozzarella or Monterey jack) until melted.
Serve immediately, and enjoy!