Hot Dog Chili

When I was a kid, there were a lot of weekends we had either hamburgers or hot dogs for dinner. Looking back, it was probably because it’s a cheaper meal, easy to fix on a busy day and we loved them. I mean, who doesn’t love a good hot dog with chili. Down here in the South, most restaurants serve hot dogs topped with chili or as we call it, a chili dog. I thought that’s how everyone ate their hot dogs…..hey, I was a kid what can I say. My hubby, who is from up North, wasn’t quite sure what to make of a hot dog with chili not to mention that it doesn’t contain beans. He pretty much loves them now. My mom and dad always made their chili from scratch. My recipe is pretty much they way they made it….and my mom still does to this day, but of course I’ve tweaked it a bit. It’s great topped with ketchup, mustard and even a sliced pickle or two. This also makes a great chili cheese sandwich…..but that’s for a later post so stay tuned.

Here’s what you need:

*1 LB or ground beef; I use a leaner beef for this

*3/4 cups ketchup or more to taste

*2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce or more to taste

*2 tsp. mustard or more to taste

*1 TBS chili powder or to taste

*1 tsp. onion powder or more to taste

*1/4 tsp salt or more to taste

Heat a large pan to medium high heat and add ground beef, break up into very small pieces as it cooks; drain if needed.

Turn the heat down to medium and add the remaining ingredients.

Mix well to combine.

Reduce heat, cover and simmer for abut 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve over hot dogs and add your favorite toppings.

*Note*

This can be frozen for up to 3 months.

Easy Salsa

My very first post on my blog was my Salsa recipe for some Super Bowl noshing. Now that football season is back….. much to my hubby’s uncontainable excitement…..I thought why not post my easier version, after all, watching all those games requires some all day football snacking.

Here’s what you need:

*2 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes

*1 10 0z. can diced tomatoes with green chilies; if you like chilies in your salsa, just add another can of diced tomatoes.

*1 small onion, roughly chopped

*2 cloves of garlic

*1 tsp. garlic powder

* 1 TBS lime juice, or more to taste

* 1/2 tsp salt, or more to taste

* 1/4 tsp cumin

* 1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped; or more or less to taste

In a food processor, add all ingredients except for cilantro. Pulse a few times to mix everything together.

Add cilantro

Pulse until you have desired consistency. Taste to see if you need to add any more spices.

Pour into a serving bowl, grab some chips and commence snacking.

To store, place in a container with a tight fitting lid and place in refrigerator. This can be kept for about 5 days.

Shortcut Meat Sauce

I’m a big fan of making my own homemade meat sauce, but there are times when I want to put a dish together quickly or I’m just too tired to do all of the work it takes to make a great sauce. This is my go to shortcut sauce. I have used it in many dishes that require a meat sauce. With some added love and ingredients, no one will know it came from a jar…… just make sure you get rid of the evidence before anyone enters the kitchen. Don’t worry, your secret is safe with me.

Here’s what you need:

*1 LB ground beef

*2 jars or your favorite spaghetti sauce

*1 Tbs olive oil

*1 small onion, diced

*2 cloves of garlic, minced

*2 tsp. onion powder, or more to taste

*2 tsp. garlic powder, or more to taste

*2 tsp. dried oregano, or more to taste

*2 tsp. dried basil, or more to taste

*2 tsp. sweet paprika, or more to taste

*1 bay leaf

*1 tsp. chili powder, or more to taste; yes you read right, chili powder in a small amount doesn’t really add the heat, but it adds another depth of flavor.

*salt, to taste

Heat a large sauce pan to medium high heat. When the pan becomes hot add olive oil and onion and cook about 2 minutes stirring frequently. Add in the garlic and saute until onions are softened, but do not let the garlic burn. Add the ground beef, and break into large pieces while mixing it with the onion and the garlic; let it brown for several minutes. As the beef continues to brown, break it up into even smaller pieces. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, but not too often so all of the meat can brown; drain if needed and add back to the pan. Turn the heat down to medium and add in the spices except for the bay leaf, cook for about 1 minute, stirring to mix spices into the beef. Carefully add both jars of sauce; stir to mix well and add in the bay leaf. Cover and simmer for at least 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the bay leaf. Use right away or refrigerate for 3 to 4 days. This also freezes nicely in an airtight container or zip top bag for 4 to 6 months.

Enjoy!

Creamy Parmesan Peppercorn Dressing

I love a good salad. One of my favorite salad dressings, besides Caesar, is Parmesan Peppercorn. I can never seem to find a good one at the grocery store. So I came up with this quick, easy one that tastes really delicious on just about any salad. Most of these ingredients you probably already have on hand and can whip this up in no time.

Here’s what you need:

*1/2 C. Mayonnaise

*1/4 C Sour cream

*1/2 Tbs. Lemon juice

*2 Tbs finely grated Parmesan cheese (I used the kind that comes from one of those shaker tops…. you know which one I’m talking about… don’t judge it’s good)

*cracked peppercorns, to taste

*1 tsp. Dill weed

*1 tsp. Garlic powder

*Milk, enough to thin out the dressing to the desired consistency.

In a small bowl or small glass jar add mayonnaise.

Next add sour cream.

Then add Parmesan

Cracked peppercorns

Lastly the dill, garlic and lemon juice.

Add milk a little at a time and stir until you reach the desired consistency. Serve on your favorite salad.

I like to store the dressing in a small glass jar.

Store up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

Enjoy!