taco stoup

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a stoup? whats a stoup? people ask me that all the time when i say “hey i’m making taco stoup.” a stoup in this texan lady’s terms are a cross between a stew and a soup. its a little brothy, but chunky like a stew. ta-da! a stoup is born!

i think this is one of my favorite winter/cold weather meals. in texas, winter is more sporadic. not something constant. like this morning, woke up and its in the 20s. tomorrow.. its supposed to be almost 60. what can i say but sporadic. ¬†and just a little under a month ago, dfw was iced in for several days. so yeah…….

this recipe specifically is a healthier version, but its so delish, that the serving size and amounts you will eat in one sitting won’t be. ūüôā

Taco Stoup:

1.5 lbs extra lean ground beef

1 can ranch style beans

1 can pinto beans w/ jalapenos

1 can white hominy (i personally dont like hominy, but husband does, so its in there)

1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce

1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes

1 can Rotel spicy (you can substitute for mild Rotel if you want you’re not a spicy person)

1 can whole kernel corn

1 pkg dry taco seasoning mix

1 pkg ranch dressing mix

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Brown ground beef. Drain grease off.

Combine remaining ingredients in large pot. *a 5 gallon crock pot is perfect for this!*

Simmer until flavors are well blended. Your tasters are the judge of this. I don’t use a specific time frame when simmering this stoup.

  • Recipe can easily be doubled. Just ensure you have a large enough pot or crock pot to simmer it all in.¬†
  • Also makes freezes well for meals later

Enjoy with tortilla chips!

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I hope everyone out there reading has a fantastic and safe NYE! As for husband, little man and myself, we will be deep frying all kinds of sinful things and vegging at home.

As for tomorrow, we will dine on our little southern tradition of Black-Eyed Peas and Cornbread. I can already taste them!

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spaghetti with low fat turkey meatballs

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with the new year in 2 days (hello 2014!), many of us, myself included, always try to eat healthier, make wiser life choices, etc, so figured i would share my healthier option to your classic meatball. hopefully this year, there’s more eating healthy in my forecast than the first few days.

i love pasta, and you can go either way when it comes to the noodle type you prefer, basic or whole wheat. ¬†i buy whatever i feel like while i’m at the store or whatever is the best deal at the time, because personally to me, i don’t think a little white pasta is going to kill anyone.

Pasta:

as far as the spaghetti part, cook as little or much as you want for this recipe. i typically cook the whole box, because we love leftovers in our home. perfect for lunches or dinner for husband when i’m working. boil a pot of water with a little olive oil until pasta is a little past al dente. i dont like any bit of crunchy or super soft noodles when i’m making spaghetti.

Sauce:

To make the spaghetti sauce, I either use the traditional already prepared sauce if I’m in a hurry or I make my own from tomato sauce, garlic,¬†Italian¬†seasoning, oregano, ground red pepper, salt and pepper.¬†

Low Fat Turkey Meatballs:

1/2 all lean white ground turkey meat

1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped (note: i hate onion, so i use onion powder in its place)

1/4 parsley, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 tsp oregano

1 egg

1/2 dried Italian seasoned breadcrumbs

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

olive oil (for browning meatballs, not for mixture)

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Beat egg in large bowl.

 Add all remaining ingredients (minus olive oil). Mix well with hands ensuring all ingredients are thoroughly mixed.

Form into 1/2 balls. Heat small amount of olive oil pan (about 1 tsp to keep things low fat) in skillet.

Cook half the meatballs in skillet until all sides are browned completely. Repeat with remaining meatballs.

Once meatballs are cooked, serve. I love meatballs on my pasta so I tend to have three or four for my small serving, but who’s to judge ūüôā

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Bon Appetit

*just another little side note, i do alot of store brand shopping, so unless in the ingredient list a particular name of item is used (ie. kraft), chances are its store brand or I have found no real difference between using one brand versus the other.*

chocolate sugar cookies

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christmas may be gone (363 days until the next one!), but cookies are something i completely enjoy all year round. and when i saw this recipe i knew it had to become a permanent fixture in my library.

*and something i want to point out on this little blog of mine. i’m not one to take a million pictures of all the steps of the process. its just not me. now don’t get me wrong, if its something that i feel is¬†necessary¬†i will share more pictures, but for¬†the most part i wont.*¬†

i think the best part about this recipe… its sugar, its chocolate, its cookies. ¬†and cookies that can be cut to any cute shape or size. for my particular occasion was christmas. so what better than to have chocolate reindeer cookies?

Chocolate Sugar Cookies:

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup butter, room temp softened

1 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg

1 tsp vanilla

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Begin by mixing with a whisk in a large bowl 2 1/2 cups flour, 1/2 cocoa, 1 tsp salt. Set dry mixture aside.

In mixing bowl, cream together 1 cup room temp butter and 1 cup granulated sugar until fluffy. Once fluffy, add large egg and 1 tsp vanilla until thoroughly mixed.

Slowly add dry flour/cocoa mixture to the butter/sugar mixture, until dough mixture consistency has been reached.

Separate dough into two sections and wrap each section in saran wrap. Chill in refrigerator for 2 hours.

Once dough has chilled, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly flour working surface and roll dough out to about 1/8 inch thick and cut with desired cookie cutter or utensil. Place cut dough on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper (or silpat!).

Bake for 12-14 minutes. Completely cool before decorating.

*In our case, we enjoyed them plain with a cup of coffee or tea!*

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the pantry is full!!

as far as my kitchen, it’s a busy place to be. whether it’s whipping up meals or something sweet, it’s a continuous experiment.

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with this little library of mine, I hope it brings discoveries of many new dishes and treats, while still enjoying things from when I was a child. I also hope this library becomes a source for others to find yummy recipes to enjoy with their friends and families as well.