This past week was SOUPer Friday.
“What one earth is that?” you may ask. Well, it is a gathering of friends who get to together to enjoy each others company, share a meal, and talk about what they share a passion for. (See more here.) I was inspired long ago by a story of a women who repaid her friends’ dinner invites by bringing them all together for a meal in her home. Her menu? Bean soup. It was cheap and could feed a crowd. I combined this idea with another story I heard of a couple who hosted concerts in their New York apartment and invited their friends who enjoyed the fine arts. They also shared a meal as well as something they had a passion for—the arts.
My dinners have kept the soup idea but our reason for gathering is to hear from mission workers who practice their calling locally as well as a round the world. It’s a marvelous night of good news. This month we heard of a local ministry helping those with special needs, outreaches using the arts in Germany, prevention of human trafficking in India and Thailand, and upcoming opportunities to help the homeless in Mexico. Every month is different and the reports of positive action bring hope to those who hear the stories.
If you are local to the Victor Valley in California, feel free to join us. Contact me directly for more information or join our Facebook page SOUPer Friday.
One of last week’s soup offerings was Mexican-Style Beef and Hominy Stew. It was delicious. All the ingredients can be dumped into a crockpot in the morning and by suppertime you will have something pretty delicious.
Mexican-Style Beef and Hominy Stew
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 2 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 15.5 ounce can hominy, rinsed and drained
- 1 14.5 ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- 3 cloves garlic , minced
- 1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 cups chicken broth
- Dump all ingredients into crock pot, leave ground beef in one large piece.
- Cook on low 8-10 hours, or high for 4-6 hours.
- When finished, use a potato masher, break up ground meat into bite-sized pieces.
- serve with chopped cilantro and lime wedges.
All ingredients can be put into a gallon zipper bag and frozen for a later cooking date. to cook—dump frozen meal into crockpot and follow cooking times.
People want real, flavorful food, not some show-off meal that takes days to prepare.
chef Ted Allen
Footloose and fancy free,
my husband and I are on the road. We’ve decided to start a new chapter in our lives that will not include a 9 to 5, but will allow us to be more involved in the things that speak to our hearts. But first, a road trip. We have had our granddaughter with us for the summer and we are now delivering her back to her parents in Oklahoma. We have had a great summer, and these last few days will be no exception. We will be camping (in our tiny home on wheels a.k.a. travel trailer) along the way and enjoying a few of the sights. Tonight, we are sleeping in Gallup, New Mexico. All day along the highway, I kept seeing signs for Indian fry bread which inspired a dinner of Indian Tacos.
I’m not sure what the traditional recipe is. I just know what my mom, who lived in Oklahoma for the last twenty-five years of her life used to make. They included the same fixings as regular tacos– seasoned ground meat, beans, cheese, lettuce, tomato, and onion. Whatever you like really. The only difference is instead of a tortilla, everything is piled on top of a crispy fry bread. Oh man, is it yummy. Since we were on the road, I used canned biscuits that I rolled out, then fried in about ½ inch of hot oil. You can do the same or try the following recipe.
Indian Fry Bread
• 3 cups All-purpose Flour
• 1/2 teaspoon Salt
• 3 teaspoons Baking Powder
• 1 1/3 cup water. Can use part milk if desired.
• Vegetable Shortening or Lard for Frying
1. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together.
2. Add the water and mix/knead the dough until soft.
3. Let rest for 20-30 minutes.
4. Separate dough into small balls about the size of a lime. Roll out to ¼ inch thickness.
5. Fry in deep fryer or skillet with 1-2 inches of oil/shortening/lard until golden.
If you’re not having Indian Tacos, a little sprinkle of cinnamon sugar or drizzle of honey makes a very sweet treat.
This much I know. If you are what you eat, then I only want to eat the good stuff.
Life has been a whirlwind around my house these past few weeks with deadlines and travel.
I must apologize for neglecting you all in keeping up with my commitment to post some yummy dump dinners every week. With all the activity around here, I have depleted my own supply. So, it’s time to stock up, but before I do, here is one recipe you can dump in your crock pot right now. There is a little chopping involved, but at supper time, you will have a pot full of yumminess.
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 bell pepper, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1/4 cup chili powder
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 2 16-ounce jars of mild salsa
- 1 14.5- ounce can black beans, drained
- 1 14.5- ounce can kidney beans, drained
- 1 14.5- ounce can sweet corn, drained
- 1 7-ounce can green chilies drained
- Fresh grated cheddar cheese
- Green sliced onions
- Sour cream
- Tortilla chips
- Place all ingredients except those for serving in a crock pot. Leave the ground beef in a chunk to cook.
- Cook for 6-8 hours on low.
- Before serving use potato masher to break up the ground beef into smaller pieces.
- Serve with suggested toppings or cornbread would be delish, too.
To freeze before cooking.
- Dump all ingredients except those for serving.
- Label and freeze.
- When time to cook dump frozen meal in crock pot and cook 8-10 hours.
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Tell me what you have been cooking up in your kitchen? I would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment.
This week has been full of making memories with my girls in Oklahoma.
We have made good use of our short time. There has been some sightseeing, a little shopping, cooking of good food, and talking, talking, talking. It has been so much fun.
Up until just a couple of years ago, my daughters all lived near us. We did a lot of life together. But the need to find work relocated two of them, along with their husbands and our grandchildren. I miss the days when we could just drop by and spend time together. Now we must be intentional with the time we set aside for visiting and make the most of each occasion.
I often wonder why we are not more like this in all our relationships.
I suppose it is because we think we’ll have time to get together as soon as things calm down. Most of us know that a slower life is a joke. The truth is, we will be waiting for a long time for that to happen. And when things actually do get slower, our neglected friendships will be long dead and buried.
So, I propose we take this matter to heart. Let us not allow our friendships grow cold. Let’s be intention with gathering together and making memories. In years to come, it will be good to have a treasure trove of stories that always begin with “Remember when. . .”
“We do not remember days, we remember moments.”
Are you wondering what good things we cooked while we were visiting?
Lots of great stuff, but one thing that usually shows up on the table when we get together is Beef Enchiladas. I learned this easy recipe when the church we attended would sell these enchiladas to raise funds for an outreach to Mexico. We liked them so much we have continued to enjoy them all these years later. They also bring back the memory of doing something pretty special with a group of people who wanted to do good in the world by serving others. Ever since then, I have had an ongoing love affair with serving the people of Mexico. See Hope Under Construction and For Goodness Sake to find out more of what I’m up to and the ministry I serve with there.
- 1 ½ pounds lean ground beef
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 large can of red enchilada sauce or 1 recipe of homemade
- 10 6-inch flour tortillas
- 1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese
- Sliced black olives
- Toppings—sour cream, sliced green onions, etc.
- Heat oven to 375°F. Spray 13×9-inch (3-quart) baking dish or pan with cooking spray.
- In 10-inch nonstick skillet, cook beef and onions over medium-high heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly cooked; drain. Stir in 1/2 cup of the enchilada sauce to season meat mixture.
- Spread additional 1/2 cup of the enchilada sauce evenly in baking dish. Spoon about 1/4 cup beef mixture down center of each tortilla; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon cheese. Wrap tortillas tightly around filling, placing seam side down in baking dish. Top with remaining enchilada sauce. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and sliced olives.
- Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
This is an excellent dish to make for a someone who needs a little pick-me-up and a visit from a friend.