Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Family and Taco Salad

This morning, Leia got upset at me and ran into my room and slammed the door.  It always makes me laugh because I can still get in, but she can't open doors yet.

She also tells me about bad things the boys do in a really forceful and serious voice.  Like this last weekend each of them had a friend over and about a gallon of mud got tracked through the house, and she told me exactly who did it and who I should spank.  "Oh no, no, no, no, no....", she said.

This morning she went with me to read to Evan's class.  I love reading stories, and wish I could do that everyday for his class.  We read Strega Nona and the pasta pot.  Evan only has like 10 kids in his class, and they are so cute!  I get to come back everyday this week to open their class with a story!  I'm doing some more of my favorites: Coconut Flan, Kapiti Plain, Little Babaji and the Tigers, and Ferdinand.  (Those probably aren't their exact names).

Last night we had Family Night like we always try to do, but sometimes forget.  We need to not forget though as recently I was filling out a page about each of them for Primary to "Spotlight" them in the near future, and for the question 'What's your favorite thing to do with your family?', each one of them answered, "Family Night".  Not swim lessons, soccer, playing in the yard, walks or runs, movies, etc., but Family Night.  They love having turns to do the lesson, pick songs, pick an activity, make a dessert and so forth.  Last night Leia was in charge of dessert for example, and I gave her some ideas of things she could do, and she liked it when I said worms, so she made Dirt.  Pat helped her to make chocolate pudding and put it in cups and then throw some gummy worms on top, and then sprinkle crushed chocolate cookies on top for the dirt.  She felt pretty special as she carried each cup out to her brothers!


I am turning 37 this week and I realized that means that IF this baby boy serves a mission when he's 18, I will be 55 by the time I am an empty nester.  Not too bad.  That's when I'm going to join my neighbors motorcycle gang, and take up competitive napping.

Now a recipe.  (I post recipes randomly).
I have never made Taco Salad before, because it's basically everything you'd put on a taco, but it looks like a big mess, and I've never tasted one that made me want to eat it again.

But, without chips, it's got protein and a lot of veggies, so I thought I'd give it a try yesterday.


Looking up recipes, I was surprised to learn that you're supposed to put Catalina dressing on taco salad!  So I made some that was delicious, BUT since it has ketchup and sugar in it I had to use just a tiny bit.  You could probably use ranch for the dressing too which would be less carbs- I'll have to try that next time.  Here's the terrific Catalina recipe though:
Catalina Dressing
1/4 c. ketchup
1/4 c. white wine vinegar
1/4 c. onion
2 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. worcestershire sauce
Salt, Pepper to taste
Blend in blender and while it's going add in 1/2 c. preferred oil.
Makes about 1-1/4 cups.


Then for the salad, everything is optional:
Taco Salad
Cook 1/2 lb. ground beef with onions, chili powder, cumin, and garlic salt, drain and add 1 can pinto beans and some salsa and keep warm (or you could just use taco seasoning)
canned corn
tomatos
shredded cheese
sliced olives
chopped avocado
green onions
1 head of romaine lettuce chopped finely

Fold all of these ingredients together in a large bowl WITH the Catalina dressing.  I only used about 1/3 cup of the dressing, but you can use it all if you like!  The meat should be warm, but not so hot that it cooks the lettuce and melts all the cheese.  But I think this salad tastes best slightly warm.  Serve big helpings with chips to scoop, or leave out the chips and eat with a fork.

You could keep all the ingredients separate and let everyone make their own but if I did that I'd have to find at least 6-8 bowls and pass them around and my kids would take just the cheese and chips and call it salad. Oh and one of them would spill ALL the dressing on their plate.









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