Summer heat and veggie variety

Middle of June and the heat is here. Heat index near 100 earlier this week, although today is a sunny blue sky pleasant upper 80’s day.

The very last day for a few things at the Farmer’s Market today: lettuce, cauliflower, strawberries (all cool weather crops). there are still a few root crops kicking around like beets and sweet potatoes. But new summer things are coming in: lots of types of yellow & green & heirloom squash, cherry tomato varieties, and green and purple peppers.

I made taco salad, as I bought way too much lettuce last week, fearing it was the last…and then bought a little more today.  Quick and easy and the meat/bean mix reheats easily in the oven. The recipe is from a food service manager I used to work with, who adapted her recipe to feed about 600…and then after I left that job, I adapted it back down to family size.

Taco salad

  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 – 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • taco seasoning mix
  • 8-0z. jar taco sauce (mild or medium)
  • 1 can refried beans
  • lettuce
  • chopped tomatoes (or halved cherry tomatoes)
  • shredded cheese (mild medium cheddar is best)
  1. Brown beef and onions. Drain off fat.
  2. Add taco seasoning mix & water according to mix directions. Stir in and cook until water is absorbed or evaporates, about 10  minutes.
  3. Add taco sauce, refried beans. Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
  4. While meat is simmering, shred or cut lettuce, and grate cheese. Chop tomatoes into chunks, or cut cherry tomatoes in half.

To serve: Portion lettuce onto plates. Top with tomatoes chunks.  Sprinkle with shredded cheese. Top with meat/bean mixture.

Avocado slices and good taco chips on the side are a plus.

Sadly I ate the salad for lunch before I thought to photograph it – will replace this sentence with a picture soon.

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