It was HOT here in Omaha last week! Humidity sky-high and heat index temps even higher. So I did what moms in tropical climates have been doing for millenia — I made a spicy dish. Hot peppers and spices (even the mild ones) have a cooling effect because they increase perspiration and respiration. We had a budget meal of Momma’s Turkey Taco Soup with Tortilla Chips.
Momma’s Turkey Taco Soup is my version of the old Weight Watcher’s soup made with ground turkey, onion, canned beans, tomatoes, corn, and seasonings. My version uses ground turkey breast, which is extremely low in fat, and reduced-sodium canned products and seasonings when I can get them cheap. And for a special treat to add crunch, I got tortilla chips from Aldi.
Ground turkey (which my favorite meat gal informed me was breast, and it was) 1.71 for about a pound and a half
1/2 cup frozen chopped onions (the remnants of a package for .88) about .15
Canned beans x 2, 1.18
Canned corn FREE
Canned tomatoes .69
1/2 packet taco seasoning .35
1 packet ranch dressing mix .69
Brown the turkey with the onions; add everything else. Usually I add a small can of pintos, but I didn’t have any; and usually one of the red beans is chili beans. I normally use tomato sauce instead of the Manwich and add chili powder and cumin, but I have so much Manwich, it contains four servings of vegs per can (supposedly), and it has the chili powder in it already. I skipped the cumin. Let it simmer 1/2-1 hour. Served with chips on the side (half a bag = .50).
Total for the meal alone with chips: $3.39! This made enough for three large extra servings, the entire pot of soup alone cost $5.02. Normally, a pot of this soup makes 10 1-cup servings. However, #1 is eating like there’s no tomorrow, so I’m also having fun adjusting to that. I was surprised there were only three servings leftover.
Eating for hot weather can be a challenge. Salads with a little sliced cooked chicken or beef are cool, but not always filling for teens. We grill or pan-grill often, including vegs, just to give our food that summer flavor. Hopefully, my tomatoes will start producing in abundance soon, and we’ll enjoy those as a veg side. I found myself buying nice fruit at incredible prices this past week. Haven’t seen blueberries for .99/pint in recent years.
Enjoy the season, and try to stay cool!