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Saturday, October 10, 2009

Hearty Taco Soup

The temperature last night was under 25 degrees.  Brrrr!!!  My husband and son have been on a scout camp out and I'm pretty sure they'll need some warming up once they arrive home!  (Can I just say I am SO glad I was not a scout having to do that year round camping thing...  I LOVE to observe cold weather and snow from inside, while sipping hot chocolate. LOL)

I decided on this Hearty Taco Soup for dinner.  It is easy to throw a big pot together, it holds nicely a long time, and it warms you to your bones. :o)  I used to work at a restaurant that served Taco Soup once in a while.  I loved it!  (I really miss working there, but am enjoying even more being a stay-at-home-Mom)  It took me a few tries to figure out what to put in it to make it pretty close to the one at work.  I usually just sort of dump, stir, and taste to get this right, but tonight, I measured just so I could post this for you.  I hope you enjoy it as much as my family does!

This makes a big pot.  Probably close to a gallon.  It would be easy to cut in half and feel free to add or substitute ingredients to your liking.  I don't buy taco seasoning anymore, but it's really easy to just use a pack or two of that instead of all the taco-ey seasonings.

Hearty Taco Soup

1 lb. of hamburger (I use as lean as I can afford, or be sure to drain the fat off after browning)
1 large onion, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
4 C. water
2 T. Beef bouillion (I use a powdered base made by Watkins - use 4-6 cubes if that's what you have)
2 cloves of garlic, minced or crushed or 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 - 1 tsp. cumin
4 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. salt
pepper to taste (most of the time I forget to add it, but I'm not a huge pepper fan)
1 1/2 C. frozen corn (or a can of corn would work too)
2 cans of diced tomatoes, or a quart of home canned
2-3 cans of kidney beans I like dark red but use whatever you like.  Sometimes I throw in a can of black beans as well.

Brown your hamburger in a large pot.  Add onion & celery and cook a few minutes.  Add everything else BUT the kidney beans, bring to a boil and simmer for 1/2 an hour or so until veggies are good and tender.  Add beans and heat through. At this point it will hold for a long time... I've cooked it in a crockpot all day & it turns out wonderful.  Serve with shredded cheese and crushed tortilla chips to top each bowl.  (we also like sour cream on ours - except for the little girls, they think it's icky... oh well...  All the more for ME!  lol )


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