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1. Cook the bacon, uncovered, in a large saucepan over moderate heat until golden brown and crisp - about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to paper towels to drain. Put aside.
2. Add the beef to the dripping in the saucepan, and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Add the onion and cook 5 minutes longer.
3. Add the carrots, celery, tomatoes, rice, potatoes, basil, water, salt, pepper and the bacon. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes, or until rice and potatoes are tender.
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