Taco Soup

My mother gave me this recipe that a friend of hers had shared. I changed their recipe a little because I think the ranch dressing mix that they added made it too salty. Also, they said to drain all of the canned beans & vegetables, then add water – this seemed ridiculous to me, so I don’t do it.

Servings: 4-6

1 lb ground beef, cooked
15 oz can corn, undrained
2 – 15 oz cans pinto beans, undrained
15 oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
4 oz green chiles, chopped
1 pkg taco seasoning
Cheddar or Jack cheese, grated
sour cream or plain yogurt

  1. Dump all ingredients in a large saucepan.
  2. Heat over medium heat until heated through.
  3. Serve topped with grated cheese and sour cream or yogurt.
  • I keep containers of precooked ground beef in my freezer. I use it still frozen – it will be ready by the time everything is heats.  If you don’t have this, you can cook the meat in the saucepan before adding everything else.
  • I prefer “petite diced” tomatoes which are cut into appx ½” pieces. You could also use fresh or frozen tomatoes.

Cheesy Herbed Frankfurters

I found this recipe and Creamy Onion Frankfurters in a magazine in the late 1970s, but neither recipe says where I got them.

Servings: 2-3

2 cups Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded
¼ tsp dried basil
¼ tsp dried sage
¼ tsp dried thyme
¼ tsp dried rosemary
¼ tsp dried oregano
¼ tsp dried marjoram
3 large frankfurters (about 7″ long)
1 baguette, about 21″ long

  1. Mix cheese & herbs.
  2. Cook frankfurters as desired (broil, grill, boil). Cut each almost in half lengthwise.
  3. Cut baguette into 3 pieces.  Cut each piece almost in half lengthwise.
  4. Sprinkle half of the cheese mixture into the sliced baguette.
  5. Top with frankfurters, opening out flat.
  6. Sprinkle with remaining cheese mixture.
  7. Place on a baking sheet and heat in 375℉ oven until cheese is melted, about 15 minutes.

Creamy Onion Frankfurters

I found this recipe and Cheesy Herbed Frankfurters in a magazine in the late 1970s, but neither recipe says where I got them.

Servings: 2-3

¼ cup butter
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
⅛ tsp dried basil
⅛ tsp dried thyme
⅛ tsp dried rosemary
⅛ tsp dried tarragon
¼ cup sour cream
3 large frankfurters (about 7″ long)
1 baguette, about 21″ long

  1. Melt butter in a large skillet over low heat.
  2. Add onions, garlic and herbs. Cover and cook, stirring often, for 15 minutes.
  3. Uncover and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are limp and golden, about for minutes.
  4. Blend in sour cream until heated through.
  5. Cook frankfurters as desired (broil, grill, boil).
  6. Cut baguette into 3 pieces.  Cut each piece almost in half lengthwise. Toast lightly.
  7. Place frankfurters in baguettes and top with creamy onion mixture.
  • You can substitute yogurt for the sour cream.

Streamlined Lasagna

This is the recipe that my mother made when I was growing up. It is not authentic in many ways, but it is delicious comfort food using ingredients that were readily available in a grocery store in the 1970s.

Servings: 6

1 Tbsp oil
½ cup onion, diced
1 lb ground beef
1 clove garlic, sliced
¾ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
1 tsp dried oregano
3 Tbsp parsley, chopped
15 oz can diced tomatoes
8 oz tomato sauce
8 oz lasagne noodles ( 8 slices)
4 oz Swiss cheese, sliced thin
1 ½ cups cottage cheese
parsley, chopped

  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Saute onion until tender.
  2. Add ground beef, cook until browned.
  3. Mash garlic with salt and add to meat with pepper, oregano, parsley, tomatoes, and tomato sauce. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. If making ahead, refrigerate sauce until ready to assemble.
  5. Preheat oven to 350℉.
  6. Cook lasagne noodles until al dente. Drain & cover with cold water.
  7. Spread of sauce in a 9×13 pan. Top with half each of lasagne noodles, Swiss cheese (reserve 1 slice) & cottage cheese.
  8. Repeat, ending with remaining sauce and reserved cheese.
  9. Bake for 30 minutes or until hot & bubbly.
  10. Sprinkle with chopped parsley before serving.
  • I prefer “petite diced” tomatoes which are cut into appx ½” pieces. You could also use fresh or frozen tomatoes.
  • You can substitute mozzarella for the Swiss cheese and ricotta for the cottage cheese for a more authentic dish.

Fettuccine with Peas, Mushrooms & Ham

SOURCE

Servings: 4

5 Tbsp butter
6 green onions
8 oz mushrooms, sliced
1 ¼ cups whipping cream
4 oz ham, chopped
1 cup Parmesan
1 lb fettuccine, cooked
salt & pepper, to taste
10 oz frozen peas

  1. Melt butter in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add green onions and saute until soft.
  3. Add mushrooms, increase heat to high and cook until mushrooms are slightly browned.
  4. Add cream and boil for 2 minutes.
  5. Stir in peas and cook until almost tender, about 30 seconds.
  6. Reduce heat to low. Stir in ham, Parmesan and fettuccine. Toss until heated through and sauce clings to pasta.
  7. Salt & pepper to taste.
  • You can substitute other pasta such as tortellini or ravioli for the fettuccine.

Mary’s G-o-o-o-d Stuff

I got this recipe from a recipe exchange that I belonged to in the late 2000s, but unfortunately I did not make a note of who submitted the recipe. If you know where this recipe came from, please let me know.

Servings: 6

2 Tbsp water
1 lb Italian sausage
1 onion, dices
4 cloves garlic, minced
15 oz can diced tomatoes
4 oz green chile, chopped
2 cups water
8 oz uncooked pasta (shells, rotini, penne, etc.)
1 Tbsp dried oregano
1 Tbsp dried thyme
½ tsp nutmeg
1 cup sour cream

  1. Heat 2 Tbsp water in a large skillet or Dutch oven.
  2. Add sausage, cover and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. Remove cover and let water evaporate, browning sausage lightly. Drain off fat.
  3. Add onion & garlic and cook 5 minutes longer.
  4. Add tomatoes, chiles and water. Bring to a boil.
  5. Add pasta and spices. Return to a boil, turn heat to low.
  6. Cover and cook until pasta is al dente. Mixture should be loose, but not too soupy.
  7. Turn off heat and stir in sour cream.
  • I prefer “petite diced” tomatoes which are cut into appx ½” pieces. You could also use fresh or frozen tomatoes.
  • You can substitute 2 – 10 oz cans diced tomatoes with chilies for the canned tomatoes and the chiles.
  • You can substitute yogurt for the sour cream.

Goulash Soup

Adapted from The Ground Beef Cookbook by Joanne Waring Lindeman. I reduced the amount of meat and changed the seasoning.

Servings: 6

1 pound ground beef
1 cup onion, chopped
1 cup potatoes*, chopped
1 cup carrots, sliced
½ cup celery, chopped
1 cup cabbage, shredded
2 – 15 oz cans diced tomatoes*, undrained
1 ½ cups water
1 cup rice*
1 bay leaf
1 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp salt, or to taste
¼ tsp fresh ground black pepper
1 ½ cups cheddar cheese*, grated

  1. Saute beef and onion in a hot large pot until browned. Drain fat.
  2. Add veggies and water. Bring to a boil.
  3. Add remaining ingredients except cheese. Cover and simmer for about 1 hour, or until rice and veggies are tender.
  4. Serve topped with cheese.
  • The potatoes and rice are not cooked before adding them to the pot.
  • I prefer “petite diced” tomatoes which are cut into appx ½” pieces.  You could also use fresh or frozen tomatoes.
  • Parmesan cheese is also very good on this soup.

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Ramen with Beef and Vegetables

Adapted from The Ground Beef Cookbook by Joanne Waring Lindeman. I reduced the amount of meat and omitted the salt.
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Servings: 4

1/2 pound ground beef
3-4 green onions, sliced
1 cup chopped vegetables (spinach, zucchini, mushrooms, peas, or any other veggies you like)
2 – 3 oz packages ramen noodles
soy sauce

  1. Saute beef in a hot skillet until browned. Drain fat.
  2. Add onions and veggies. Cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Prepare ramen according to package instructions, but DO NOT add seasoning packet. Drain.
  4. Add beef and veggies. Cook until all liquid evaporates.
  5. Serve with soy sauce.
  • NOTES

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One-Pot Creamy Ranch Chicken

This is adapted from Rachael Ray’s One-Pot Creamy Ranch Chicken Succotash. I love the flavors, but I prefer it without the beans. I also omitted the tomatoes & dill.

Servings:

1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen
4 chicken breast halves, halved crosswise to make 8 pieces total
Freshly ground pepper
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/3 pound bacon, chopped
1 pound potatoes, diced
1 onion, chopped
1 Fresno chile pepper, chopped
1 cup chicken stock
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 Tbsp fresh chives, finely chopped
2 Tbsp fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, grated
1-2 tsp hot sauce (to taste)
warm crusty bread, for serving

  1. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat the EVOO in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook until browned. Remove the chicken to a plate.
  3. Add the bacon to the pot and cook until crisp, then remove to a plate.
  4. Add the potatoes to the bacon drippings and lightly brown for a couple of minutes.
  5. Add the corn, onions and chile pepper and brown 8 to 10 more minutes.
  6. Stir in the chicken stock. Return the chicken and bacon to the pot and simmer 10 minutes.
  7. Combine the cream cheese with the herbs and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Add the cream cheese mixture to the pot and stir until well combined.
  8. Add the hot sauce.
  9. Serve with toasted English muffins or warm sourdough bread.
  • You can substitute 1 pound ground turkey for the chicken pieces. This is not quite as fancy a dish, but it is very tasty & economical.

Impossible Pie

basic recipe from Bisquick

1 1/3 cups milk
3 eggs
3/4 cups Bisquick
1/4 tsp pepper

  1. Heat oven to 400 F.
  2. Combine all ingredients and beat until smooth.
  3. Pour over chosen ingredients in a greased 10″ pie pan.
  4. Bake until set, about 25-35 minutes.

Filling options:

  • chicken & vegetables
  • ham & Swiss cheese
  • bacon & Cheddar cheese
  • spinach & Swiss cheese
  • Taco – ground beef with taco seasoning, onions, Cheddar cheese
  • chicken, broccoli & Cheddar cheese
  • ground beef, mushrooms & 1/2 cup sour cream (replace equal amount of milk)
  • green chile & Cheddar cheese
  • cherry tomatoes & Cheddar cheese

Note – all filling ingredients should be chopped in bite-size or smaller pieces and meat should be cooked. If using vegetables with high liquid content such as spinach, squeeze out liquid before using.