So my mother in law got me this cookbook for my birthday (May 10). Well, she got me a bunch of cookbooks, but this was the one I used for dinner tonight. I made Chili in Tortilla Bowls. I'm going to have to admit, it wasn't my favorite meal. There are a bunch of things that I would have done differently and the next time I make it, I will def make those changes.
So it starts out with these ingredients: ground beef, red bell pepper, chili powder, black beans, corn, onion, salt, pasta sauce, large tortillas, and shredded cheese.
As I was defrosting the meat, I decided to chop up my veggies. Now I'm going to sound like an infomerical for just a second. I only use Cutco knives for all my cutting needs. These are seriously the best knives in the world. My in laws didn't believe me until I got some for our wedding (yes we registered at Cutco) and started using them over at their house (they only had store bought crappy knives). They were impressed and bought us more for Christmas! I still don't have the whole set, but I'm working on it. So for the next few years for birthdays, Christmas, Valentine's Day, Groundhog Day, you can buy me Cutco knives!
Ok, infomerical done.
So I chopped up the veggies. Colorful huh?
Then I started to brown the meat. This is where I didn't do what I normally do when browning meat. I followed the recipe pretty much to the T and I shouldn't have. I normally season the meat with different seasonings that I know we like, but this time, I only put in salt and pepper. I should have at least put in a clove of garlic (which I would have pressed with my Cutco Garlic Presser), but I didn't. I also would have put in some other seasonings from our spice rack, but didn't. Oh well, you cook and learn.
So after I browned the meat, I added the bell pepper, onion and chili powder.
After the onion gets all soft and stuff, I added the black beans (recipe called for kidney beans, but neither of us are fans of that stuff), corn (I didn't have enough corn that the recipe called for, but I used what I did have and it didn't make a difference) and pasta sauce. Here is where I made mistake number whatever. I usually make "my own" pasta sauce, but I'm not sure how much sauce "my" recipe is and I didn't want to mess up this dinner. So I went against my better judgement and bought jarred sauce (gross). Next time, I'll use my own sauce, which consists of a can of tomato sauce, a can of tomato paste, a can of Rotel, and a little water. Add in some garlic and seasoning and you got yourself one heck of a sauce, at least according to Nuge. I can't take credit for this sauce either, because it's the one my mom makes.
So anyway, back to the meal. After you bring all that stuff to a boil, you lower the heat and let it simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
So while that is simmering, you take one of the large tortillas (I used spinach tortillas because I misread the recipe). You can use whole wheat, spinach, or tomato tortillas. Anyway, you put it in a microwaveable bowl and kinda press it in there. You nook it (in the microwave) for a minute and a half and let it cool. After you let it cool...
You have a nice green tortilla bowl. Now I'm gonna be honest with you here. I was a little disappointed in how easy this was. I just figured there was more to it, but I guess not. Oh well. It worked. It was hard and held up when we put the food in it.
Since Nuge isn't home for dinner, I usually take food up to him at work so he doesn't have to eat fast food. So I had to put everything in a Tupperware to take it up to him, so the presentation isn't all that great, but it all tastes the same.
After you spoon your helping into your nice little bowl, you put some cheese on it and viola, a nice dinner you have!
Nuge ate all of his. I did not. The tortilla was kinda hard. Not crunchy. Maybe it's because all we did was put it in the microwave. Nuge said he'd probably like it better if it was rolled in the tortilla instead of spooned in the bowl. So I'll try that with the left overs and see what he thinks of that.
Overall, it was pretty good, but with the store bought pasta sauce and no seasonings, it was, in my opinion, pretty bland. Next time, I'm going to add garlic and my own sauce at the very least.
Here is the actual recipe from the book:
1.5 pounds of ground beef or ground turkey (I used only a pound of ground beef. Turkey would have been good too though.)
1 onion ( I didn't use all of it because it hurts Nuge's belly.)
1 red bell pepper ( I didn't use all of this either because I wasn't sure how I'd like bell peppers)
2 tablespoons of chili powder (measuring is for chumps, I just put some in there until I thought it was good enough)
1 can of red kidney beans, rinsed and drained (I used black beans and just took the juice out of it)
1 can of corn (I used frozen corn that probably didn't add up to a whole can)
1 jar of Ragu Chunky Pasta (not a fan. I'd use 1 can of tomato sauce, 1 can of tomato paste, and one can of Rotel)
6 burrito size whole wheat, spinach, or tomato tortillas (I only used to because, well there is only 2 of us)
1 cup of shredded Cheddar Cheese (measuring is for chumps, I just sprinkled some on the top of them and called it a meal)
1. In 12 inch skillet, brown meat, stirring occasionally. Add onion, pepper, and chili powder and cook, stirring occasionally, minutes or until onion is tender. Stir in beans, corn, and sauce.
2. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Meanwhile, using one tortilla at a time, press into 1 or 2cup microwaveable bowl to for bowl shape. Microwave on HIGH for 1.5 minutes. Let cool 1 minute. Gently life out and arrange on serving plate. Repeat with remaining tortillas.
4. To serve, spoon chili into tortilla bowls and sprinkle with cheese.
There you have it folks. A nice (sorta) dinner for you and your guests, husband, parents, whatever.
Just thought I'd leave you with some cute pics of Gus and our niece Emma.
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