Good evening, WFD! It's been a tough couple of weeks. I had to say goodbye to my oldest pootie back on the 17th and between being somewhat mopey and getting back into the groove of normal life my desire to cook has been lacking. Ready made deli meals from the grocery store and delivered pizza got me through it though. I did do some cooking; one night I used up a bunch of those cute mini bell peppers in a casserole version of stuffed peppers, and then I made corn chowder at some point. But I just didn't have the desire to do much grocery shopping and the cupboards, fridge, and freezer have slowly become barren wastelands of a few leftovers and condiments. So yesterday I had the day off and actually felt like cooking. I pondered various options at the store finally settling on a quick favorite: Tacos!
Tacos are a great quick meal because it all comes together pretty quickly and the ingredients are so variable. I prefer soft flour or corn tortillas and have found myself pretty much ignoring what is on sale these days and going to our new favorite: Blue corn & flaxseed. I think they're Mission brand, but what really matters is the slightly sweet taste that compliments whatever you fill them with.
When it comes to meat I like to stick to ground beef or turkey. I know it's not very "authentic" Mexican but it's what I grew up with. Ground turkey was on sale yesterday so that's what I got.
Then I like to add beans and with the ground turkey I find black beans work really nicely. Refried are good too.
And then I usually grab a quick package of rice like Rice-A-Roni's Mexican or Spanish Rice. I know I could make my own, but the box mixes are convenient and I stick with the brands I know I like.
Then there's the toppings. Shredded cheddar & Jack cheese, shredded lettuce, salsa, sour cream, and avocado.
Last night I kept it pretty simple and made it a one pot meal too:
Brown the ground turkey (1 lb) in a couple tablespoons of olive oil and season with salt & pepper. When there is no more pink stir in the rice/pasta mix if you're using it. Follow the package directions adding water and the seasoning mix. Bring to a boil then cover and turn the heat down to a simmer. This mix called for 15-20 minutes of covered cooking. At 15 minutes I lifted the cover, gave it a stir, and dumped in the drained can of black beans. Covered for another 5 minutes then turned the heat off and took off the lid to let it stand and thicken.
If you prefer to make the beans and rice separately that is fine. I just didn't want to dirty up any more pans.
Heat up your tortillas however you prefer: I usually cover them in a damp paper towel and give them 30 seconds in the microwave. Then put out your toppings and enjoy building your tacos as you see fit.
As usual I over-fill mine and they fall apart during the eating phase, but hey! that's what forks are for, right? As a friend of mine used to say, the best things in life are usually the messiest;)