Tag Archives: black olives

Taco Salad

Tonight’s supper is an old favorite of Linton and Kate’s!  Taco Salad!  There is not really a recipe, it’s more about bringing together all your favorite ingredients – and they can vary greatly from cook to cook – or family to family!  Our taco salad is an easy fix, something to have on a rushed evening – when there was a basketball game or play practice to attend – not something that’s on the agenda any more!  Browned hamburger seasoned with chili and cumin is one of the hardest steps in making this salad!  Everything else is opening a can, shredding some cheese, washing the lettuce!  I do insist on homemade guacamole – which you can find in a previous blog.

The building of a taco salad is an art in our household – no two people make their salad alike!  All ingredients are placed in separate bowls and each person concocts their dinner according to their preferences.  Of course the correct way to fix a taco salad, my way!, is to start with a nice bed of salad greens.  Next comes my seasoned hamburger – then the cheese, so it can melt just a bit.  Tomatoes are next, then black olives and a bit of salsa.  If you need a recipe for salsa try my fresh tomato salsa.  Three dollops are the crowning piece de resistance – sour cream, refried beans and guacamole!  Served with tortilla chips it is so good – a burst of flavors in every bite!  And even though I have instructed my family in the proper way of making a taco salad, being the very independent souls that they are, filled with ingenuity and stubbornness, they cling to their design.  Kate makes small little piles of ingredients – with no lettuce.  Taco salad and no lettuce – I’m still pondering on that one!  Linton, bless his dear little heart, does not eat guacamole – or at least not in previous years.  He missed out on the best part!  Ritchey is not as particular of the order of his ingredients – dare I say he puts his hamburger on the plate first?  Ah, what can I do with them?  Just love them I suppose!  How do you like your taco salad?

And now after that bit of silliness – I was tagged by Linda at Savoring Every Bite for the 10 Question Quiz:

1.  Describe yourself in seven words. 

I love life with Ritchey, Linton, Kate!  That about sums it up – even though we are all alike in many ways, our differences make life very interesting!  We love Renaissance Faires, Tolkien conventions, food, music, the beach, books, gardening, being green, traveling and genealogy (I must admit this is mostly me!).

2.  What keeps you up at night?

Not a thing, once my head hits the pillow that’s it till morning!

3.  Who would you like to be?

No one but myself!  I love being who I am and where I am in my life.

4.  What are you wearing now?

Jeans, a shirt and sweater – it’s cold here in Kentucky!

5.  What scares you?

Nothing really.  I’m concerned about the economy and the unconcernedness of the world and people in general today.  I wish people cared more, were more passionate about what they felt and believed in, were more anxious to stand up for what is right.

6.  What is the best and worst things of blogging?

The best – I love all the people I’ve met, the new friends I’ve made.  I so enjoy reading your blogs – and have learned so much from you!  The worst – I think everyone has the same answer – the time it takes!  I write two genealogy blogs a day and a food blog a couple of times a week.  I wish there were more hours in a day!

7.  What was the last website you  looked at?

My genealogy website!

8.  If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?

To become a minimalist.

9.  Slankets, yes or no?

No.

10.  Tell us something about the person who tagged you.

Even though I am not Italian – unless you go very far back into history – Linda and I must be related.  Our way of cooking is so similar.  I’ve made so many of her recipes and they turn out lovely – the flavors and seasonings are just perfect!  Her photos are exquisite – you can almost eat from the pages of her blog!  I have learned so much from her!

 Who are you going to tag to join the quiz?

Karen – Back Road Journal

Cecilia – The Kitchens Garden

Greg and Katherina – Rufus’ Food and Spirits Guide

Caroline – Sweet Caroline’s Cooking

Joanne – Fifteen Spatulas

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A Light and Fluffy Frittata

How much better could Saturday morning get after being out in the chill and frost, taking pictures and working up an appetite?  Finding enough cherry tomatoes that survived the last several frosty days – hidden underneath the vines – to use for a breakfast frittata!  And dill!

And thyme!

My sister’s fresh eggs were waiting in the fridge – along with some asiago cheese.  Black olives, red onion and a little salt and pepper were the only other necessary ingredients.  Well, other than butter!

Frittatas are such lovely works of art – similar, but every one completely individual and different in its own way!  Saute chopped onion in a couple tablespoons of butter in a skillet.  Break 5 or 6 eggs into a bowl.  Add a little salt and pepper and whisk!  Add the eggs into the skillet.  Add tomatoes, chopped black olives, fresh dill and thyme.  Cook until the bottom is golden brown.  Remove skillet from heat and add shredded asiago cheese.  Place under the broiler in your oven until the cheese is melted and eggs are set.  Prepare yourself for one great breakfast – especially if it’s shared with someone you love!  Enjoy!

The Friday Night Special

A one-dish meal is always a good choice for Friday night.  I love to put a big dish in the oven, let the flavors marry, and create a special dinner – while giving me time to do a couple of chores – or write a blog!  Comfort was on the agenda again tonight.  Ritchey has worked especially hard this week – last night it was 10:30 when he walked through the door!  He needs to be pampered tonight.  Today has not been the rainy day of yesterday, but it was still damp and chilly – so I wanted to serve something with warmth and depth!  Sausage, pasta, beans, tomatoes and spices – oh, and cheese!  I can definitely build on that!

The green tomatoes give this dish a unique flavor – quite unlike a ripe tomato!

For Mother’s Day Linton, my son, gave me two journals – The Gourmet – one for each of us for our recipes, cooking notes, etc.  And when we are finished we will exchange them.  He is an excellent cook and I look forward to the day when he brings me his journal!

Friday Night Special

  • 1/2 pound sausage
  • 1 red onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 pound penne pasta, cooked to package directions
  • 1 – 15 ounce can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 – 15 ounce can dark red kidney beans
  • 1/2 cup black pitted olives
  • 2 handfuls chili powder
  • 1 handful cumin
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground thyme
  • 2 light green or beginning to turn tomatoes, cored and chopped
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, shredded
  • sour cream
  • guacamole

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a small skillet brown sausage, breaking up into small pieces.  When brown add onion and saute five minutes.  Add garlic and saute another minute.  Remove from heat.

In a large bowl combine the sausage mixture, cooked pasta, canned tomatoes, kidney beans, black olives and spices.  Stir well to combine.  Add the green tomatoes and 2/3 of the mozzarella.  Mix well.

Pour into a large dish.  Top with remaining mozzarella.  Bake for 30 to 35 minutes.  After 15 minutes lay a sheet of foil over your dish.  Remove foil for the last five minutes.  Serve with a dollop of sour cream and homemade guacamole.  Enjoy!