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Program #127
Guest: Joe Spotts

Tacos

5 lbs, 80% lean ground beef (the 20% fat provides great flavor)
2 large white onions - coarsely chopped
1/3 cup ground black pepper
1/4 cup granulated garlic
2 heaping Tablespoons Chicken Base

Put ground beef in a large, deep, preheated pot over medium high heat. Stir occasionally with wooden spoon to prevent sticking. If the beef that touches the bottom of the pot is allowed to reach a good, rich brown before stirring for the first time, this little bit of extra-brown beef will enhance the flavor of the finished product.

When meat begins to get hot through, add onions. Once again, this seems like a lot of onions but it is essential for the flavor. Onions will almost entirely disappear during cooking.

When meat loses almost all of its red color, sprinkle pepper and garlic powder over meat and do not stir for at least 5 minutes. The dry ingredients will pick up moisture from the steam and reconstitute. After 5 minutes, resume occasional stirring and adjust heat to low.

After 20-30 minutes and liquid develops in the bottom of the pot, make a well in the center of the meat with the wooden spoon. This well should partially fill with liquid. Add the chicken base to this well and stir into the liquid. When chicken base is dissolved, stir to distribute thoroughly. Chicken base provides all the salt this recipe needs.

Cook for 1-1 2 hours over low heat, uncovered, stirring occasionally.

Meat may be served immediately or refrigerated overnight. If refrigerated, remove excess fat with a fork or spoon before reheating.

Serve with your favorite taco shells (best if heated) and toppings B chopped lettuce, tomato, cheese, etc.

Leftover taco meat freezes very well. Place desired amount in large baggie. Remove as much air as possible before sealing, put baggie on counter and flatten into a plank shape. Let cool completely to room temperature. Place in freezer until frozen. In this way the taco planks will take up less space in freezer. Do not stack baggies in freezer while product is still warm.

Cheese Dip

1 can Ro-tel tomatoes with chilies
1/2 can water
2 teaspoons granulated garlic
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 pound Kraft American cheese

Add first 5 ingredients to blender. Blend for 2-3 minutes.

Pour into small pot and bring to a low simmer for 30 minutes. This will boil over if heat is too high.

Cube American cheese and add to blender.

While liquid is still hot, pour over cheese in blender. Blend until smooth. If mixture is too thick add a small amount of water to blender.

If you can wait, this is better the next day. Serve with your favorite corn chips and fried pork skins.

The 20 percent fat provides great flavor.

Tomatoes, lettuce, and cheese.

The usual suspects, plus Joe Spotts.