Posts Tagged ‘ground beef’

Such beautiful lettuce we’ve been getting in our weekly CSA boxes! But these cooler days call for warmer fare than those cool, crisp salads of summer. I had two big heads of lettuce just begging to be eaten, so I decided to “warm ’em up” by mixing in some hot spicy taco meat and black beans. It made for a warm and filling winter evening meal.

WHAT YOU NEED: the beauty of this recipe is that you can use just about anything you like and have on hand!




grated cheese, chopped tomatoes, crushed tortilla chips, jalapenos, black olives, salsa


some type of bean


ground beef seasoned for tacos


Prepare taco meat: cook and season a pound of ground beef for tacos. There are quick and easy pre-mixed seasonings, or you can make your own. I’ve used this recipe and was pleased with it, although reviewers suggested reducing the chili powder and salt, which I did.

Keep meat hot and heat up some beans. You want both of these items hot when added to the salad.

Wash and chop lettuce and tomatoes and any other items you are using such as olives and  jalapenos; grate cheese if necessary. Combine all of these ingredients in a large bowl.

Add the hot taco meat and beans.


Hot taco meat and beans warm up this lettuce!

Stir to combine and then add the crushed chips.


Add chips last to keep them crispy!

Toss and serve. This is best eaten immediately. Serve with additional chips and salsa.


Cool lettuce warmed up for winter!

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Another perfect head of cabbage in the CSA box presented an opportunity to try a recipe I got from my sister-in-law years ago. I discovered I’ve been missing out on an easy and delicious one-pot meal!  Bake some hot cornbread to sop up the juices and you’ll be in comfort-food zone on a cold, wet evening.



head of cabbage

1 lb. ground beef

1/2 lb. breakfast sausage (bulk, not link or patties)

1 onion, chopped

1 bell pepper, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1 can Rotel tomatoes


Brown ground beef and sausage. When nicely caramelized, add chopped onion and bell pepper and cook until transparent. You don’t need to add much salt/pepper because of the soup and tomatoes.


Add onion and garlic to caramelized beef/sausage.

Add garlic and stir to prevent burning. Turn off heat and elevate skillet to drain off fat. While this drains, give the cabbage a rough chop and place in bottom of a greased oven-proof casserole dish.


Elevate skillet to drain off fat.

Remove fat from skillet. If there isn’t much, I use a paper towel to soak it up.


Paper towel absorbs fat.

Stir in soup and tomatoes. Mix well. These two ingredients provide the moisture (and seasoning) for the cabbage to absorb.


Tomatoes and soup provide moisture.

Pour meat mixture on top of cabbage.


Meat mixture on top of cabbage!

Cover with lid and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove lid, stir well, and cook 30 more minutes, without a lid. Serve with hot cornbread!


Cold weather comfort food!



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My husband loves stuffed bell peppers, so what to do with all these farm peppers was a no-brainer!

1 lb. ground beef
1 small onion
2-3 pods of garlic
salt and pepper
2 cups of cooked rice
6-8 bell peppers

8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. chili powder
1 Tbl Worcestershire sauce
A few drops Hot Sauce if desired


BROWN the ground beef and season with chopped onion, chopped garlic and salt and pepper.


Ground beef seasoned with onion and garlic.

Fold in the cooked rice. I learned this recipe from my Cajun mother-in-law, and she always uses white rice, but since I’ve been trying to use more brown rice, that’s what I used this time. I am so happy with Alton Brown’s method of cooking brown rice. It’s a no-fail method!


Perfectly cooked, fluffy brown rice every time!

There are 269 reviews to Alton’s method with some great ideas of “add ins” such as chicken and different spices. I follow the suggestion of using chicken broth instead of water and leaving out the salt. I usually double the recipe and freeze the left-overs in 2 cup portions.

PREPARE the peppers by cutting off the tops and scooping out the seeds and membranes.



I chopped up the tops and froze to use later.

BLANCH the bell peppers for one minute. This makes them more pliable when stuffing and helps them bake up nice and tender.


Blanch the peppers to make them pliable for stuffing.

Stuff the beef/rice mixture into the blanched bell peppers. I begin by filling them ¾ full and then add more if there is mixture left over.


Mix up the tomato sauce topping and spoon over the top of each pepper.


Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes. Enjoy now, or cool and then freeze to enjoy later!


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Swiss Chard Roll

Holopchi are Ukrainian cabbage rolls. There are a variety of versions from different cultures, including different greens, different fillings, and different sauces. This recipe combines a few of those variations to make a CSA friendly version. Roll swiss chard leaves around a yummy filling and bake .

One variation, I’ll be using next time is called Lazy Holopchi – instead of carefully rolling the filling into the leaves, just chop up the leaves and mix it all together before baking. The rolls make a nice presentation, but the lazy version is much faster!


  • 3 cups cooked rice
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 cup sliced leeks
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 bunch of swiss chard
  • 1 cup broth
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Meanwhile, sautee the ground beef and leeks until fully cooked. Stir the rice into the beef mixture.

Holopchi Filling

2. Spoon some of the rice mixture onto a swiss chard leaf. The amount of rice will vary depending on the size of the leaf, usually 1-3 TBSPs. Fold in the sides of the leaf, and then roll from one end to the other. Place the roll in a casserole dish. Repeat until all the rice mixture is gone, filling the casserole dish with layers of rolls.

Rolling Holopchi

3. Mix together the broth and tomato sauce and pour the mixture over the rolls.

Swiss Chard Rolls in Casserole Dish

4. Cover and bake at 350 for 1.5 hours, or until the liquid has evaporated. Serve hot!


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