One Saturday morning, Hubby and I were going over the week’s shopping list before heading out to the various markets. When the weather is nice, marketing includes a trip to a produce shack up the road for anything we need that we aren’t growing ourselves. Let me tell you, they have some of the best berries in town.
Anyway, I was in the kitchen going over some of the spices on the list. When it comes to spices, I’ve gotten smart over the years and keep mine arranged alphabetically. With over 50 different spices on the spice shelf, there needs to be some clear organization.
While I checked off the spices, Hubby was in the garage checking the meats in the freezer. On the menu that week was Hickory Balsamic Beef Skewers over Rice Pilaf.
“Can you use Chuck Stew Meat for the skewers?” Came his question. I hesitated. Sometimes Stew Meat can be tough if not cooked for a long time in a stew, hence the name Stew Meat. A Chuck Roast has good flavor, and if handled properly it might be fine. Besides, the meat was already cut into cubes, which meant less prep work for me. Sure, I agreed.
The morning came for me to prepare our skewers. My recipe called for 2 pounds of Sirloin. What was glaring at me from the beef shelf was a five pound block of frozen stew meat. Five pounds!! This would not do. Time to punt.
There was plenty of ground beef on hand. I knew we had a big package of corn tortillas for the Cheese Enchiladas that were on the menu for later in the week. I could have bought 10 corn tortillas for $3.00 or 30 for $4.00. That was a no brainier. It’s not like we don’t have a need for tortillas in our house. There were plenty of garden fresh tomatoes on hand. Yeah, tacos were not only doable but knowing my guys, preferred. Tacos to the rescue!
Beefy Tacos in a Soft Corn Tortilla Shell
1 1/2 lbs Beef, Ground Chuck
1 teaspoon Cumin
2 tablespoons Taco Seasoning
1 teaspoon Mexican Chili Powder
1 1/2 tablespoons Tomato Paste (from a tube)
In a large cast iron skillet over medium heat, brown ground beef, breaking up meat as it cooks. Season with cumin, taco seasoning and chili powder.
Drain meat, return to skillet. Add tomato paste, stir to blend. Cover and keep warm until ready to serve.
1 cup diced Tomatoes
2 cups shredded Lettuce, Iceberg
1 cup Cheese, Mild Cheddar
1/2 cup Sour Cream
Taco Sauce, Optional as desired
While the meat is browning, chop the tomatoes, shred the lettuce and grate the cheese. Set aside in small serving bowls. Place the sour cream in a pretty serving bowl, if desired, along with a spoon for serving. Assorted taco sauces are also nice offerings. Some can be spicy, others mild.
Soft Tortilla Shells
12 taco size Tortillas, Soft Corn
Cooking Spray as needed
Warm the tortillas with a little cooking spray on a flat griddle until warm and soft. Stack in a tortilla server to keep warm until ready to use.
When you are ready to serve, the meat can be placed in a serving bowl, or for a more casual approach served straight from the cast iron skillet. Let everyone fill and garnish their tacos as desired. It’s time to enjoy.
Parmesan Cheese from a can
If desired, sprinkle a little Parmesan Cheese on the outside of the filled taco shells. It looks pretty and adds a little something extra in the texture department.