Monday, July 18, 2016

Taco Burgers

Oh you guys.  It is so HOT! I lost my swimsuit, I need to get another one, my kids pool is calling me is just so HOT!  Anyway, I digress....

Taco burgers are a family favorite for the Simmermans.  These date way back and when I made homemade taco seasoning I decided to surprise my husband with taco burgers for dinner.  Neither of us are big on sloppy joes, but taco burgers man, they are an entirely different ballgame.

I don't think there is a lot of explaining that needs to happen.  Just remember for anyone who doesn't care for the "burger" aspect, at least make this taco meat because seriously, it is amazing.  And you can keep a few taco shells on hand for the anti burger people.  Top it with whatever you like, we are lettuce, cheese and a thick slice of tomato kind of family but you do you!

I did 2 lbs of meat because what is better than taco burgers or tacos for dinner?  The same thing for lunch the next day!

2 lbs ground beef
1 can of diced tomatoes with green chilies
3-4 T homemade taco seasoning (2 pkgs of the store bought stuff)
1/2 cup water

Brown your hamburger as you normally would.  Drain off any excess fat and place back in the pot.  Add in the rest of the ingredients, stir to combine and let simmer about 3-5 minutes.

OH the flavor!

See how easy it is?  Make sure not to skip draining off the fat, nobody wants a soggy burger.  The water will just loosen it up a bit so no worries there.

Now toast your bun or don't, I do NOT toast it for this.  Make sure your lettuce is shredded.  It tastes better.  Stop looking at me like THAT.  It does!  Dive in.  Over and over!


Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Swiss Mushroom Burger Mac

 Hellllllooooooo!!!  I haven't given you a new recipe for over a week I don't think.  I have a few ready for you, I just got busy as my oldest "little" (granddaughter) got here from Jersey last weekend.  We have been busy in magical forests and fairy wonderlands, swimming, playing, having sleepovers,  and eating spaghetti and meatballs.  I mean, come on, this is the life for a 7 year old!  It is so good to have her back for the summer.  So that is what I have been doing and while family and life always come first, I consider you all part of my life as well, so I hope this one potter, gets you all jittery in the joints around your knees!

My husband has been asking for a recipe like this for awhile and I obliged him.  ALTHOUGH, it is pretty different than how he presented it to me, I needed to turn it into a one pot meal.  It is summer, nobody needs hours of work, and busy moms and dads and grandmoms and grandpops we just need easy and delish!  This is going to be a hit.  Use fresh mushrooms if you like, I just used canned.  And certainly feel free to trade out the ground beef for a ground meat of your choice!  Don't skimp on the cheese, and make sure to let it sit a few minutes to thicken even more before serving! 

1 lb ground beef (turkey or chicken would work fine)
2 T butter
8 ounces mushrooms (2 cans or 8 ounces fresh, sliced)

3 cups milk
2 cups water (or beef stock)
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
16 ounces rotini or other short cut pasta
12 ounces shredded Swiss cheese (don't skimp, and if you like it a lot, add more)

In a large pot, brown your ground beef until fully cooked through.  Drain if needed and return to pot.  Add in butter and let melt.  Add in mushrooms and saute until softened.

I used canned mushrooms for this, you do you.  Turning your heat to medium-high-ish, add in milk and water, salt and pepper.  Stir and bring to a boil.  When the mixture is boiling add in pasta, give it a quick stir, turn the heat to medium and simmer for the amount of time listed on the pasta box.

Stir once or twice during cooking, but do it quickly and replace the lid.

When your pasta is cooked, turn off heat, add in cheese, give it a good stir, and replace lid for 2-3 minutes.

Stir again and let sit about 3 or 4 minutes with the lid off.  Stir one last time, and wa-la, dinner!

Enjoy another one pot dinner.  Oh make sure to serve this with sliced tomatoes and corn on the cob!  I mean...ya know, if you feel like it.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Homemade Taco Seasoning

Hey guys!  Thanks for making the "click" and reading!  We are in the middle of a 96+ degree everyday heat wave.  Feels like 105-110 most days.  Cooking oddly has NOT been the last thing on my mind in the heat.  This is good weather for cold sandwiches, salads, and slow cooker recipes.  No heating up of the kitchen and not a lot of work.

For me, this weather keeps me in the AC, and wanting to cook!  In this case the beginning of something spicy and hot!  Or potentially anyway!

I have been working on being more, oh.....what's the word, health conscience?  No.  Just, more aware, maybe that is a more fitting term.  I am working on reducing salt.  Slow but sure.  I keep noticing all of the salt in these store bought seasonings and I just had to work something else out.  I enjoy making my own spice blends so I took a shot in the dark and went with it.  I must say, this is better than anything out of a package.  Perhaps I am partial, but, my husband agreed.  I will share a recipe soon using this seasoning.

I would suggest 2 T. per pound of ground beef, go easier if you like less spice.  I mean, you can certainly leave out the ground red pepper, or reduce it with no problems.  I say keep it in, just use less if you are a little apprehensive.  Get spicy friends, get SPICAAHHHH!

I just tossed mine in a pint size ball jar.  Add the following ingredients in and shake!

2 T. Paprika
1/4 tsp. Ground Red Pepper
2 T. Chili Powder
1 tsp. Garlic Powder
1 T. Cumin
1 1/2 tsp. Salt
1/4 tsp. Black Pepper
2 T. Onion Powder
1 T. Dried Parsley

Notice I used garlic POWDER and onion POWDER not salt.  If you choose to use the salt versions, please omit the addition of regular salt.  Twist the lid on and shake, shake, shake it!  1-2 T. for each pound of ground meat!

Enjoy and let me know what you think!