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OG Beef Tacos

Welcome to our second Taco Tuesday together. This time we are making ground beef tacos with all the original taco toppings. It may sound weird, but as a kid, I didn't eat tacos a lot. It wasn't in the dinner mix. The first time I made tacos for dinner was when Nick (my now husband) and I started dating. When I asked him what he wanted for dinner, he said tacos and I internally panicked a little, because I had never made them and they honestly looked a little complicated to me. I was young!! So I went to the store to pick up all the fixins, totally confused.

Apparently I did an OK job on my first attempt at tacos, because Nick ate so many I thought he was going to burst. I will never understand how men can eat so much and not gain an ounce, but if I even think about food, I wont fit in my jeans the next day. It's annoying. Anyway, my tacos have changed a little since the first time I made them, as a confused young woman trying to impress her new boyfriend. Seasoning in packets is no longer used, and I add veggies to the meat. This stretches the meat, adds vitamins and a little flavor. I'm sneaky like that. You can honestly use any ground meat you like in these. We've used turkey, beef, even elk and the tacos taste great every time.

Wash and prep all your veggies first. Dice the onion and bell pepper, shred the iceberg lettuce and dice your tomato. Next, throw the ground beef into a non stick pan on medium high heat and break it up so it all browns evenly. Once the meat is about half way done cooking, add the onion and bell pepper. There is a lot of controversy about whether to put the veggies in the pan first, or the meat in first. I like when my veggies still have a little bite to them, so I put them in second. If you want the vegetables to be really tender, add them first. It's all up to you.

After adding the bell pepper and onion, cook for about 5 minutes, or until the ground beef is cooked through. Next, add the taco seasoning and water. Simmer for another five minutes stirring occasionally. Now turn the heat off, then cover the pan so your taco meat stays warm while you heat the taco shells. I like to warm up my shells, because it brings out the natural flavor, also, it makes the shells super crispy and delicious! To heat the shells, spread them onto a baking sheet and add to a 350° oven for 3-5 minutes. After these bad boys come out of the oven you are ready to build your tacos and plate.

Building the taco can be different for everyone, but this is how we do it. Using a butter knife, spread sour cream evenly all over one side of the shell. Yes, I said a butter knife. It's easier to spread this way and you get a little sour cream in each bite. This works better than dolloping it all over the top of the taco! Trust. Now spoon in your meat and add the cheese to the hot meat so it melts. Lastly, fill the rest of the shell with lettuce and tomato, then drizzle with hot sauce.

Plate your tacos with chips and whatever your favorite dip happens to be. This time, I whipped up some Mexican Street Corn dip. This recipe will be posted soon so stay tuned! Enjoy your meal and thanks for cooking with me.

Ashley Tuttle

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