21 October 2008


I couldn't decide which recipe to share with my (very few) readers so I decided to post two. One is my old favorite and the second is my new favorite. Both are good for the fall...even though it's not really fall- only in the morning here in Midland. Both are for the crock-pot but the first one can be done on the stove also.

Taco Soup

I LOVE this stuff. It's one of the only things I make that I actually crave and savor...usually these feelings are only for things I don't make myself. You know how it is...you always like things that are made for you or that you order at a restaurant more than what you've made yourself. Although, for me, this is starting to change since I got my panini press! That's a story for another day-back to the soup.

This can be made in the crock-pot but I actually have done it on the stove more often.

1-2 lbs. ground beef (1.20 is usually what I can find at the grocery store without buying more than I need)
1 medium - large onion, diced
1 can green chiles (the really small can/store brand)
1 can mild rotel tomatoes
3 cans diced tomatoes (sometime I buy the "petite diced" if I want a less chunky soup-or a little of both kinds)
1 can ranch style beans
1 pkg ranch seasoning
1 pkg mild taco seasoning
1 1/2 cups water
1 can sliced olives
Fritos (this is a MUST!

Brown beef, do not drain. Transfer to a warmed crock-pot. (If making on the stove just brown beef in a large soup pot and add ingredients to that). Add all ingredients--do NOT drain any of the cans. I just realized I don't know how long to cook it in the crock-pot! Oops! I will be consulting my mom on this and I will let you know! BUT...for the stovetop: Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered for 1 hour. Stir often. Serve in bowls with chips, cheese, sour cream, avocados, etc. This soup is hot and I often burn my tongue so be warned. Remember, the Fritos make this soup...in my opinion it's boring without them and not as good with tortilla chips! Next time I make this I'm gonna buy the store brand b/c Fritos are expensive!

Harvest Lamb (Beef) Stew

I love this ALMOST as much as Taco Soup. It's my new favorite. Peggy (mother-in-law) made it for us and then I made it...pretty easy and such a Fall meal! I halved the recipe which was plenty for two but doesn't leave as many leftovers--which are great too! So if you want to, make the whole thing and enjoy it for a couple of days. I made it with beef...I have no idea how it is with lamb but it's probably great!

2 1/2 lbs. lean lamb stew meat (about 1-inch pieces)
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
4 Tbsp. olive oil
1 (6-oz) can tomato paste
1 (14.5 oz) can beef broth
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped sweet onion (or yellow-about half an onion)
3 garlic cloves, crushed
*1 small butternut squash (about 1 lb.), peeled, seeded and chopped
hot cooked mashed potatoes or grits (I love it with grits but not everyone loves that stuff)
garnish: fresh parsley sprigs (I didn't do this)

1. Rinse lamb stew meat, and pat dry. Sprinkle with salt and pepper; toss in flour, shaking off excess.
2. Cook half of lamb in 2 Tbsp. hot oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, stirring occassionaly, 10 minutes or until browned. Repeat procedure with remaining lamb and oil. Stir in tomato paste; cook 1 minute. Add broth, and stir to loosen particles from bottom of Dutch oven. Transfer mixture to a 6-qt. slow cooker.
3. Stir in celery, onion and garlic. Top with butternut squash. (Do not stir to incorproate.) Cover and cook on LOW 4 1/2 hours or until meat is tender. Serve over hot cooked mashed potatoes (or grits). Garnish if desired.

I also made dinner rolls (Rhodes frozen rolls). You have to have bread to "sop" up the stew! ;) Jonathan thinks I'm funny about that.

*This is the only tricky part...those things are hard to chop. I read in "What's a Cook to Do?" (Laura's bday gift!) that the best way to cut up a butternut squash is to cut it in half, seed it and then chop into cubes and THEN cut off the skin from these pieces...rather than peeling the hard skin off at the beginning. This was still tricky but I think it's a better alternative. Try looking this up online...I'm sure there's some great advice somewhere! Just be careful...I could see how easily you could cut off a finger!

One more thing...I got a JOB! I know this should probably be a post on it's own but oh well! I start tomorrow! I'll be the archival assistant at the Petroleum Museum. I'm so excited and so nervous. This is such a new thing! I thank God for providing for me. I'll continue to trust him with this job.


1 comment:

Claire said...

goofball, I can't believe you let your post get to the end before you mentioned your JOB!!! Congrats sweetheart, I bet that is a major weight off your shoulders to have something to do and feel like you are 'contributing' I am so happy for you!

ps, those recipes sound great, and I will be trying them both!