Sunday, January 23, 2011

Navajo Tacos

Years ago I started cooking up meals that were easy to double, and froze the leftovers for another day.   I only cook for two people now, but I try to make my time in the kitchen count.   If I'm browning a pound of hamburger, I brown two pounds, divide it in half and freeze the remainder.    It doesn't take any more time, a minimal amount more energy, and if you have to clean up anyway, why not make it count, and only clean once.  There are so many dishes that start with a pound of browned hamburger or turkey.   Or if I'm making meatballs, I make extra, and either cook them then, and freeze them or just freeze the shaped meat.

When I make Chile, Chile Verde, Spaghetti Sauce or soup I always make enough for several meals.    Having a selection of easy to heat foods in the freezer for those days when life goes wrong, means I don't have to stress about getting a good meal on the table, or try to figure out which restaurant to go to.

And when you've got Chile in the freezer, you've got the beginnings to several meals.    Including Navajo Taco's.

The first step is to make Chile, using your favorite recipe or the following Chile recipe which is one I got from my mother in law, (she likes to make a big pot of Chile and invite her boys over for Chile and Scones, fry bread).    I've tried a lot of Chile recipes over the years, but this one, is my go-to recipe.

Carol told me that the recipe was developed by a fireman and he won a cook off with it, I don't know his name but did want to point that out.     But I said I was going to make Navajo Taco's, so here's the step by step.   (Well, almost the step by step, I forgot to take pictures of the dough, and the chili as it was cooking. ).
And I use frozen bread dough for this, trust me, it's easy and quick.   Thaw the bread dough and then slice it into roughly 8 pieces.   Place the pieces on a piece of parchment paper, aluminum foil, or wax paper so that the slices don't touch.   Let them sit for a few minutes while you heat up a pan of oil.   Just use a big old saucepan and place a half inch or so of oil in the pan.    While it's heating, take the first piece of dough and pat it out, using your fingers to make it a larger, round piece.   You can use a rolling pin for this, but I prefer the look of the fry bread when it's been patted out.   Place the bread dough into the hot oil, and cook until brown, turning it once.   When it's cooked, take it out of the oil and place on paper towel to drain for a few seconds.  Then place it on the plate and let the fun begin.   
Place a freshly fried piece of Fry Bread on a plate.
Add some of the Firehouse Chile or your own favorite Chile, on top.

Some Lettuce,
Chopped tomatoes,
And last but not least, a sprinkle of cheese.    And at this point you can also add some sour cream, guacamole, chopped onions, chopped black olives, salsa or hot sauce, your choice.   But try it this way the first time you have it.  
Oh,  and the leftover fry bread you just cooked, just spread some butter and honey on top and eat.   And call it the dessert.   

As I write this, I've got some Spaghetti sauce heating on the stove, some of which I made the other day, and I decided to go ahead and brown up some ground turkey for tacos later on in the week.   I add the taco sauce to the meat, and then just freeze it in meal size portions.   That way, when my DH wants taco's, all I have to do is pull out the cooked taco meat, heat it and make taco's.   (did I mention that while I like to cook, I don't believe in doing more than I have to).  

Here's the recipe for the Chile.   

Firehouse Chili

1 ½ -2 lbs. Ground beef or pork

1 lg. Onion Chopped (Carol used minced onion flakes)

1 bell pepper chopped

3-4 cloves garlic (Carol used garlic powder)

1 can Kidney Beans

1 can Chili Beans

1 can Pinto Beans

1 can Ranch style beans

14.5 oz. Can Rotelle Chiles and Tomatoes

1 large can enchilada Sauce

New Mexico Chili Powder to taste

Louisiana style Crystal Hot Sauce to taste

Carol used the Chili Beans for the seasoning and didn’t use the other chili powder or the hot sauce.

Brown the meat and place in crock pot, add all other ingredients and allow to simmer overnight or for at least 8-10 hours.

I also add a couple of jalapeno's for heat and flavor. 

For more recipes please check out   Sid's Sea Palm Cooking

All about food. *giggle*

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