Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Yummy Ground Beef Stew!

So tonight I had no clue what to make for dinner.  I had no motivation to find and follow a recipe, and I wanted something that would fill my hubby and cook fast and easy.  Hmmmm.  What did I have in my fridge that would add the meat (since no meal is complete without meat according to the hubby)?  One portion of frozen ground beef.  (I buy the big ground beef from Costco, then put it into smaller frozen portions)  And that was it.  So I decided to try to recreate the yummy yummy stew that my sister and I put together when we were tent camping in Australia.  It turned out SO YUMMY again that I have to share!

Yummy Ground Beef Stew
Makes approximately 4 servings (or feeds one hungry husband and one wife with enough leftovers for one lunch)
1 lb ground beef (or ground turkey)
1 can beef broth (I used low sodium)
3/4 cup water (I just used 3/4 of the empty can of broth)
1 6oz can basil, garlic, and oregano tomato paste (plain will work too)
1 can corn or 2 corn on the cobs with the corn shucked off
1 large potato cubed
1 large carrot sliced
2 Tbsp chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
salt to personal taste

1.Cook ground beef (or ground turkey) completely in a large pot.  Flavor with salt as you see fit.  Do not drain! The juices add to the flavor!

2.Add entire can of beef broth.  Fill empty can 3/4 full with water and add to pot.  Stir.

3.Add entire can of tomato paste and stir.  Allow juices to come to a boil while you slice the vegatables.

4.Toss in the cubed potatos and sliced carrots, watch out for the splashes! 

5.Add entire can of corn.

6.Mix in chili and garlic powders, then add salt to taste. 

7. Allow to boil on medium low until potatos are thoroughly cooked (about 20-25 minutes)

Serve with hot garlic bread and be prepared to crave seconds!

P.S. I thought about adding some small pasta noodles while the juices were boiling, but chose not to at the last minute.  I'll bet you could and it would turn out just as good if you wanted to.  If you do, I would add maybe 1 whole can of water instead of just 3/4...

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Romance Challenge #4

Bigger is Better

Wha-What?  Didn't the last Romance challenge just say the little things mean a lot???  And now we're saying "bigger is better?"  I think its more to mean, if you're gonna go big, go bigger!  If you want to do something really special (even if its randomly and for no reason...no, especially if its random and for no reason), do it spectacularly!  Every once in a while, do something sweet, something normal, and do it REALLY BIG!  Make a gesture that's big.  As big as your heart. ("awwwww")

1. Go for it in a BIG way.  Pull out ALL the stops.  Don't tip-toe into being more romantic.  Be outrageously romantic.

2. GIANT BANNERS are available from supergram.  The banners are printed on white or colored paper, and lamination is optional.  The banners are about a foot tall, and tend to run from twelve feet long to thirty feet long, or more, depending on your message.  Call 800-3-BANNER, or visit the website at www.supergram.net.

3.Make a GIANT greeting card out of a big cardboard box.

4. Make a custom banner-a BIG banner- to welcome him home from a trip (or just to say "I love you!". Use construction paper and crayons, or poster board and markers, or old sheets and spray paint.

5. Craig liked doing things in a big way.  He was a dramatic and loud (though lovable) kind of guy.  Mary on the other hand, was proper and quiet (and just as lovable).  Craig sometimes criticized Mary for not being expressive or outrageous enough.  Until...one day when Craig returned home from a business trip and was greeted by Mary-and two hundred forty-three members of the local high school marching band on their front lawn.  (Most people don't consider John Philip Sousa marches to be romantic-but Craig does!)

*You too can probably hire your local high school marching band for a relatively modest donation to its band fund.*


One Saturday night Rob was able to go out on a ride-along with the Sheriff's, so I was left to entertain myself for the night.  He was estimating to be home sometime between 12am and 2am.  I was excited for him cause he was super excited, but I was bored, bored, bored.  After I finished the second season of Veronica Mars, and was starting the third, I suddenly realized this was the perfect night to pull off my BIG romantic gesture!  So I got out an old sheet from my massages that I couldn't use anymore, and a sharpie and went to work to make a big banner welcoming him home.  *Now, in hindsight, I really wish that I had spray paints to make the job a bit more easy and fast, but the end result was still cute. 
When I was done with my labor of love, I hung it up on the curtain rack, directly in the line of sight from our front door.  Then I settled down and continued with Veronica Mars until I fell asleep.  Fast forward to Rob coming home to me asleep on the couch and a giant banner declaring my love for him.  I was woken up gently with a kiss, and though I don't really remember what he said or did, he did tell me that he loved it and thought it was really sweet. =)

***Disclaimer:  I would like to remind everyone that I am not coming up with all these idea's myself.  They are excerpts from a book called 1001 Ways to be more Romantic by Gregory J.P. Godek***