Meatless Monday: Taco Chili

It’s a rainy day here in eastern North Carolina<said in my best news anchor voice. A perfect day for chili! I'm really making my best efforts towards a vegetarian life so i took an old family favorite recipe and made it meatless.
Usually I would add two shredded chicken breasts to this chili but I'm running out of meat in the freezer and trying to not buy more. This chili is amazing and simple. Just throw it in the crock pot and forget about it.

Ingredients

1 can of black beans 15 oz drained
1 can of kidney beans 15 oz drained
1 can of corn drained
1 can of Rotel, I use mild
1 packet of taco seasoning, or make your own
1 can of tomato sauce 15 oz
1/2 of an onion diced
1 tablespoon of cumin, I prefer more because I love cumin

Mix together in your crock pot and cook on low. I usually start mine mid morning and just let it cook on low all day, you don’t have to cook it all day but I like to forget about things lol. This is a little spicy for me but I’m a whimp lol! You can also add some fresh cilantro, I just didn’t have any on hand today. I did top it with some shredded cheese. And it’s that easy! I didn’t even miss the chicken, it was so good! Hope you enjoy

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Going organic?

After some long thought, research and planning I’m happy to say our family is “going organic”!!!! This has been something I’ve been wanting to do but honestly I was a little scared and totally at a loss of where to start.
For me it all started with Facebook posts about food being recalled. It seems like every day some juice pouch or ground beef is being recalled for horrifying reasons. It really made me think about the trash I was allowing to enter our family. So I started my research. I won’t go into detail, but it made me realize we needed a change. For those of you that are wanting to take the plunge into the organic world here are some helpful tips.

* Talk to your spouse/significant other. Together decide if it’s right for your family. A lot of people aren’t concerned about going organic. I view it the same way I view religion, what I believe may not be the same thing you believe and that’s ok.

* If you are worried about the financial issue, don’t be. Well…if you have 10 kids and go through a gallon of milk a day it may take some budgeting. Shop around. You would be surprised at what your local grocery store has in stock. Check out your local farmers markets and try out that organic store you’ve never been to.

* Start small. Not everything in your pantry needs to be organic. We’ve decided anything that comes from an animal will be organic. A few other things like juice are too. When you try to make EVERYTHING organic it can be overwhelming. I decided to start there because I’m very passionate about animal rights and I know how horrible the meat and dairy industry are. Trust me I would be vegan but I love bacon way to much! What really made me stick to my decision was when I was at sam’s club and saw chicken breast bigger than my head!! I don’t know about you but I’ve never seen a chicken that damn big! Think about how much of that is actual chicken and how much is hormones.

* If you are still unsure start with personal hygiene products. I have been using a body wash by Nubian Heritage and it’s like heaven in a bottle! I’ve also swapped my face wash, toothpaste, conditioner, and deodorant. Read up about the chemicals that are put in your regular products.

* Research, research, research!! Learn how to read labels. Learn that USDA certified organic and all natural are two completely different things.

* Start a small garden. This is something I still need to do. I can’t wait to grow my own potatoes and squash! It’s easy and you know exactly what is on your food.

I hope this helps anyone wondering where to start their organic transition. Don’t stress.

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Spaghetti casserole

The one thing my children request the most for dinner is spaghetti casserole. They go crazy for it! It’s super easy, but I’m not gonna lie…not the best thing for a diet. I’m sure you can’t play around with the ingredients and make a healthier version. I did use all low fat ingredients and wheat pasta.

Ingredients

1 pound of ground beef or turkey

1 Box of spaghetti noodles

8oz Cream cheese

8oz Sour Cream

1 Large can of spaghetti sauce

Shredded cheese for topping (I use fiesta blend)

Directions

Preheat oven to 375

Brown meat and cook spaghetti then drain

Mix together 8oz of cream cheese and 8oz Sour cream

In baking dish (I use an 8inch round) place a layer of spaghetti noodles then pour some of your sauce on top just enough to coat the bottom and noodles

Sprinkle a layer of meat

Then a layer of sour cream and cream cheese mixture

Repeat (mine usually has 2 layers of each)

You want your top layer to be your last bit of noodles then pour remaining sauce on top, you’ll want quite a bit on top to keep it moist.

Top with cheese

Bake at 375 for about 35-40 minutes

This is such an easy dish to make and I guarantee everyone in your family will love it!

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Easy peach cobbler

I know I’ve never shared recipes on here but I’m trying something new. One thing very few people know about me is I love to cook! I love having holiday dinners at my home and spending the day cooking a beautiful meal.  And it’s true, the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.  I think most southern women enjoy cooking, it’s an easy way to make people feel special.

On New Year’s Eve my husband and I went to his long time friend’s house.  His wife made an AMAZING peach and apple cobbler.  I hate baked apples so I only tried the peach.  I have not been able to stop thinking about it! When she told me how easy it was to make that made it even more delicious. I’m so happy she shared the recipe with me so I could share it with all of you 🙂

*Ingredients*

4 Tablespoons of Butter

3/4 c  of all purpose flour

3/4 c of sugar  (if you are using canned fruit cut back a little on the sugar)

1 teaspoon of baking powder

1/4 teaspoon of salt

3/4 c  of milk

2 c  of sliced fruit,  or one large can of fruit

1 tablespoon of sugar

*Directions*

Preheat oven to 350.  Melt butter in the bottom of an  8-inch square or 9-inch round pan, on the middle rack.   Combine the 3/4 cup of sugar and all other dry ingredients, mix well. Mix in milk until a smooth batter forms.  Pour in pan over butter and drop in the fruit, top with the tablespoon of sugar.  Cook for about an hour or until the batter is golden and the fruit bubbles.  Serve warm and top with ice cream (I did french vanilla)

There you have it, it’s that easy! Next time I may cut some white sugar and add some brown sugar. I hope you all enjoy and let me know what you think.    Also a huge thanks to Martha for sharing this delicious recipe with me 🙂

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