Of course, I tweaked it to up the garlic and onion to double. I'm a garlic/onion lover, and sometimes I substitute out those for the fresh version instead. I added 1 tsp of cornstarch (or 2 tsp of flour will work) to the mix which allows the spices to cling more readily to the meat as a thickened sauce. The spice mixture is great, but sometime was missing. I looked around at a few other recipes and found one mentioning a beef bullion cube. I have Better than Bullion paste (beef or chicken) and add a tsp while cooking the beef. What a difference! It really gives the meaty flavor that was lacking (hard to believe more meatiness is needed in a pound of ground beef, but it's true). Whichever recipe you use, try adding some meat stock paste or equivalent (but do consider the added salt from bullion if you like it not too salty). Also this recipe doesn't mention it, but adding a 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water towards the end after browning the meat with the seasoning allows the flavor to really mingle and absorb as you heat and reduce the sauce down a bit (that's where the cornstatch cling really shines). The water addition is just the basic instruction from the old packets I used to buy and it's not a step I'd ever skip.
I added flavor in my preparation, hence the 3 star rating on the basic recipe which I thought would be too bland as written...I need my garlic. The end result was amazing (better than any restaurant version) and well worth the time. My significant changes: 1)Three dried bay leaves added to simmering chicken; 2)replaced fresh mushrooms with 1/2oz of dried chopped up porcini mushrooms to the soup,the flavor was amazing; 3)sauted four chopped garlic cloves with veggies, 4)added wine right after sauteing veggies rather than at end of recipe; 5)added a handful of fresh sage leaves towards end of cooking because I have them (dried sage, thyme, rosemary or other aromatic herb would be great, but added earlier); 6)increased salt and black pepper to taste. 7) I used 3 bone-in chicken breasts (plenty of meat) and substituted 5 cups of homemade stock and 2 cups for remaining water in recipe 8) butter instead of margarine. This recipe is a great starting point, but needs your personal touch to make it truly spectacular! I've made this with and without wine, it really makes a difference. So does the dried porcini. Regular mushrooms just don't add the drool-worthy flavor.