JESSICA’S TACO SALAD WITH CREAMY TACO DRESSI

JESSICA’S TACO SALAD WITH CREAMY TACO DRESSI

JESSICA’S TACO SALAD WITH CREAMY TACO DRESSING

yield: 6 TO 8 SERVINGS by http://www.afarmgirl’sdabbles

INGREDIENTS:

FOR THE SALAD:

  • 1 lb. ground beef (you could also use ground or diced turkey or chicken)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 package of your favorite taco seasoning, portioned for 1 lb. of ground beef
  • 1 to 2 heads of iceberg lettuce or 2 to 3 heads of romaine, chopped into bite-size pieces
  • 4 to 8 green onions, sliced
  • 3 c. halved cherry tomatoes or chopped Roma tomatoes
  • 2 to 3 c. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 to 3 c. lightly crushed Doritos nacho cheese flavored tortilla chips, plus whole chips for scooping up the salad

FOR THE OPTIONAL SIDES AND DRESSINGS:

  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 c. chopped cilantro
  • sour cream
  • guacamole or slices of fresh avocado
  • 1 fresh lime, cut into wedges
  • Thousand Island dressing
  • spicy ranch dressing
  • zesty French dressing
  • mild taco sauce

DIRECTIONS:

FOR THE SALAD:

Brown beef in a skillet over medium to medium-high heat. When beef is about halfway browned, add garlic and onion. Once beef is browned and onion is softened, remove any excess fat from the pan. Then sprinkle taco seasoning over the mixture and toss to coat evenly. Add 1/3 cup of water and let mixture simmer over medium-low heat until water is dissolved. Remove pan from heat. This can be prepared a day in advance and refrigerated until ready to serve.

This salad is all about creating a dish that works for you and those you are serving. Delete ingredients you aren’t fond of. Add in some that aren’t listed here. I’ve seen this salad served many different ways:

  1. With all salad ingredients tossed together in one large bowl, with or without the salad dressing mixed in. (To avoid soggy chips, be sure to wait until you are ready to eat to toss the ingredients together.)
  2. With all the salad ingredients, optional ingredients, and dressings, in their own separate bowls, for each person to assemble their own salad. (This is typically how Jessica serves her taco salad.)
  3. With all the salad ingredients layered, as shown in my photos, with crushed Doritos and optional ingredients and dressings served on the side.

FOR THE OPTIONAL SIDES AND DRESSINGS:

I like to incorporate black beans and cilantro into my taco salad, but it seems that these two ingredients are the most likely ones that people might dislike. So…I always serve them on the side, for people to add as they wish. Same goes for the sour cream, guacamole and/or avocado, and lime wedges. Again, these are all optional.

The dressing(s) for this taco salad is whatever you want it to be. Most often, Jessica offers bottles of Thousand Island, spicy ranch, and/or zesty French dressings, for people to drizzle onto their salads as they wish. I especially like a mixture that my friend Bobbi Jo serves with her taco salad. She combines 1 cup of Thousand Island with 1 cup of zesty French and 1/4 cup of mild taco sauce, which is shown in my first photo. It’s delish!

Flank Steak Salad

Flank Steak Salad

Flank Steak Salad

Ingredients
1.5 lb. flank steak
salt & pepper to season both sides of steak
3 cups diced romaine lettuce
1 red pepper, julienne¼ cup sliced red onion
¼ cup sliced red onion
1 cup julienne cucumber
½ cup julienne carrot
Peanut Dressing
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon peanut butter
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon dice fresh mint
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 garlic clove, minced
juice of one lime
salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
Season both sides of the flank steak with salt and pepper. Place on grill.
Grill each side of steak for 4-5 minutes.
Remove from grill. Let sit for 2-3 minutes for juices to settle.
In a small bowl mix, rice wine vinegar, peanut butter, soy sauce, fresh mint, fresh ginger, mint, garlic, lime juice, salt, and pepper.
Slowly whisk in canola oil till thickened. Set aside.
In a large bowl add romaine lettuce, red pepper,  red onion, cucumber, carrot,. Toss and set aside.

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Cabbage Rolls

Ingredients:
  • 1 large head green or purple cabbage, about 2 to 2¼ pounds
  • 2 pounds ground beef or ground turkey or ground chicken
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 medium onion, grated or minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ cup raw long-grain white rice *
Tomato Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons butter or vegetable oil
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (medium dice)
  • 2 15-ounce cans tomato sauce or one 32-ounce can whole tomatoes, pulsed in a food processor with juice until pureed.
  • juice of one lemon or 2 tablespoons (or more to taste) apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ to ¾ cup light brown sugar (Depending on amount of sweetness you prefer. Start with ¼ cup and taste sauce, adding if you like it sweeter. If you prefer it completely savory, add only 1 tablespoon brown sugar and the juice from half a lemon)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ cup golden raisins (optional)
  • Chopped parsley, for garnish
Directions:
  1. Fill a Dutch oven with water and bring it to a rolling boil. When the water comes to a boil, fill a large bowl with ice water. Cut out as much of the core as you can from the bottom of the cabbage, then drop the whole, cored head into the boiling water for 3 to 4 minutes. Once the leaves separate and are pliable, immediately remove and drop the blanched leaves that separated (keep the pot of water boiling) in the ice water. Once cooled down, remove and pat the leaves dry. Repeat with any leaves still attached to the head and not pliable, until you’ve gotten all the leaves off the head, and they are all soft and pliable.
    Alternatively, If you’ve got time on your hands, you can freeze the wrapped head of cabbage for two days then defrost. When defrosted, the leaves will peel off easily and be soft enough to roll.
    Here’s some other ideas from readers, although I have yet to try them so I cannot confirm that they work. 1. Place the cabbage in the microwave for 6 minutes. The core will slip right out and the leaves will be perfect for rolling. 2. Throw the whole, uncored head of cabbage into the boiling water. The leaves won’t separate on their owm, but should be easy to peel off.
  2. Set aside about 16 of the largest leaves (these will be your cabbage rolls) and slice off any thick parts of the vein on each of them, being careful not to cut a hole in the leaves, so slice from the top. Chop some of the remaining cabbage leaves to make 1 cup of chopped cabbage, and reserve.
  3. Mix the ground beef with the eggs, grated onion, garlic, salt, pepper, and rice. (If you use cooked rice, you can test the seasoning of the meat mixture to your liking by frying up or microwaving a piece of it and tasting, if desired). Divide this mixture into sixteen 2-ounce balls. Using moistened hands, form the balls into thick cylinders. Place a cylinder of filling near the bottom of a cabbage leaf (if the vein in the leaf is really thick, shave it down with a knife before placing the beef on it, being careful not to cut through the leaf itself OR, cut the thick vein out completely in a narrow V. When you roll the cabbage, that V will be covered sufficiently.).
  4. Roll the meat filled cabbage leaf up, folding both sides over the filling, (like you see in the above photos) and finish rolling to enclose the filling, like an eggroll. Continue, filling and rolling all the cabbage leaves. Place them seam side down, on a tray or baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  5. Over medium heat, melt the butter in a heavy, nonreactive saucepan. Sauté the second onion until soft and golden. Add the garlic and saute for 2 more minutes, then add the reserved 1 cup chopped cabbage and sauté for about 30 seconds to 1 minute more.
  6. Add the tomato sauce, lemon juice, brown sugar, salt and pepper to taste, and stir to combine. Increase the heat until it comes to a boil, then lower it and simmer for 5 minutes. Add raisins now, if using.
  7. Line of the bottom of a 13 x 9 roasting pan or glass dish with a layer of sauce. Place cabbage rolls, seam side down, on top of sauce. Top cabbage rolls with remaining sauce then cover the whole pan with tin foil. Bake for 2 hours in a preheated 350 F oven.                                    cabbage

Paleo Nachos

Paleo Nachos

           Paleo Nachos    by Rebecca Bohl

 

 

Ingredients
  1. 2 medium tomatoes, diced and seeded
  2. 2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
  3. 1-2 tbsp lime juice
  4. 2 cups guacamole
  5. 2 tbsp green onions, chopped
For the sweet potato chips
  1. 3 large sweet potatoes
  2. 3 tbsp melted coconut oil
  3. 1 tsp salt
For the meat
  1. 1 medium yellow onion, finely diced
  2. 1 tbsp coconut oil
  3. 1 green chili, diced
  4. 1 lb. ground beef
  5. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  6. 1 tsp smoked paprika
  7. 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  8. 1 tbsp tomato paste
  9. 12 oz. canned diced tomatoes
  10. 1 tsp salt
  11. 1/2 tsp pepper
Instructions
  1. To make the sweet potato chips, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Peel the sweet potatoes and slice thinly, using either a mandolin or sharp knife. In a large bowl, toss them with coconut oil and salt. Place the chips in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes, then flip the chips over and bake for another 10 minutes. For the last ten minutes, watch the chips closely and pull off any chips that start to brown, until all of the chips are cooked.
  2. While the potato chips are baking, start preparing the beef. Melt the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and chili to the pan and sauté for 3-4 minutes until softened. Add the ground beef and cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the garlic, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, and remaining spices and stir well to combine. Bring the mixture to a simmer and then turn the heat down to medium-low. Cook, covered, for 20-25 minutes, stirring regularly.
  3. Stir the chopped tomatoes, lime juice, and cilantro into the beef mixture. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.
  4. To assemble the nachos, form a large circle with the sweet potato chips on a platter. Add the beef mixture into the middle of the circle, and then top with guacamole and green onions.
Notes
  1. Servings: 4-6
  2. Difficulty: Medium
By Rebecca Bohl (PaleoGrubs.com)

Spaghetti Squash & Meatballs

Spaghetti Squash & Meatballs

1  lb. ground beef-lean

1  diced onion

1  egg

dash of salt pepper

1  spaghetti squash

2 cups spaghetti sauce of your choice

Instructions:

Cut the squash in half, take out the seeds just like a pumpkin.

Place in a 350 degree oven on a cookie sheet for approximately

1 hour until soft. While squash is cooking mix together the beef,

onions, eggs, salt & pepper. Roll into meatballs to desirable size

1″-2″. Add a very small amount of coconut oil to a pan then add

meatballs and brown them.

  Once meatballs are browned, put them in a saucepan with sauce.

Cook on low for about 40 minutes, stir occasionally.

When squash is soft remove from the oven and let them cool

down. Run a fork inside to get the squash to form spaghetti

like strands. Add spaghetti back into shell put meatballs back

into bowl & serve. Enjoy!

Spaghetti Squash & Meatballs
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photo taken by iowagirleats.com
Spaghetti Squash & Meatballs
Print Recipe
photo taken by iowagirleats.com
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