Sunday, October 03, 2010


Caleb, always thinking of the newest, fastest way to produce results, came to me this afternoon with a bold, new move to improve efficiency in our meal preparation. However, before I tell you about this bold, new move you should probably have a quick peek into the workings of my kitchen.

I generally cook 3 meals a day, every day, for 9 people. Breakfast, lunch and dinner see my entire family sitting around our table. In between meals the dishes are done, and preparations begun for the following menu. At any given point in time someone can usually walk into my kitchen and find the counters clean, dishes washed, stove wiped down and general orderliness reigning. I don't say this to toot my own horn; I say it so you will fully appreciate the "help" my son is about to offer me.

Tacos were on the menu for dinner. I am teaching Bethany how to cook, and this is her first recipe to tackle entirely on her own. She is doing a great job! I was especially proud of her tonight, because she recognized the need to open the refried and chili bean cans while the ground beef was browning. She carefully opened each one, put the can opener away, and then prepared to add the cans' contents to the meat.

At this point Caleb offered a new solution for the horror of opening cans

"Mama, you know what would be great? If we built shelves above the stove that went across like this (slashes his hands horizontally through the air in front of him). Then we put the cans of beans on the shelves so they sat there. Then I could take a baseball and throw it at the cans (he winds up and gives me a full pitch so I fully appreciate his superior ball-throwing skills). The cans would just explode in half (jerks his hands from closed fists to palms-out in the international sign language for bomb), and the beans would fall right into your pot. You wouldn't have to mess around with all that can opening any more. It'd really make it a lot easier."

Taco Beans
1 - 1.5 lbs lean ground beef (depends on how "meaty" you want it - great without meat, too!)
3 8oz cans Rosarita refried beans
1 15oz can Bush's chili beans in zesty sauce (mostly drained)
1/2 packet McCormick Taco Seasoning
1/2 yellow onion (optional)

Saute onion in olive oil. Remove from pan and set aside. Brown hamburger and drain fat. Add seasoning and onion, stir. Add cans of beans, combine well. Turn heat to med. low and simmer until thoroughly hot. Serve with fixings.


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