Right now, I don't know if I am coming or going, but I do know if I have a spare minute, I do NOT want to be cooking dinner. Cookies, yes. Meals, no thanks.
So I turned to my Aunt June for help. My Aunt June was actually my Great Aunt June, my Grandfather's sister. Apparently, she was quite fond of him (her little brother) and was the only one who called him by his middle name, Linden. Aunt June lived just outside of Chicago, so I rarely saw her. When I did, I didn't pay much attention to her, of course, because there was fun to be had with all the cousins at the family reunions. As an adult, I visited her once in her home; she was quite elderly by then and was not able to get out of her chair, that I recall. Still, when Aunt June died, my Grandma (her sister-in-law) made sure I received a copy of her memorial recipe book. You see, Aunt June was known to be a good cook, and even did some catering in the Chicago area, from what I hear. So, when she passed away, her family collected all her recipes and put them into a book for the relatives. I love the idea. I try to use the book often. Her recipes are typical of recipes from her generation, lots of Jello salads and Pet Milk, maybe not what you'd call gourmet, but I love them. I haven't tried them all, but tonight, I wanted something fast, so I opened the book to one of the earmarked pages and whipped up a one-dish casserole that was surprisingly delicious! I say surprisingly, because I was very nervous about the French Fried onions. I figured the kids would balk. I thought we might like it, but I did not expect we might love it. My only regret is that Superman was not here for dinner because there is something so great about pulling a new recipe out of the oven for the first time and "wowing" them with it.
If you are as busy as I am, you may enjoy the fact that you probably have all these ingredients on hand and it is super fast to assemble.
Aunt June's Cornbread Taco Bake
11/2 lb lean ground beef
1 pkg taco seasoning mix
1/2 C. water
1 can whole corn, drained
1/2 C. chopped green pepper
(I skipped this because I would never, in a million year put green pepper on a taco!)
1 8oz can of tomato sauce
1 pkg corn muffin mix (like Jiffy)
1 can french fried onions.
(I bought the only size I found and it was about twice what we needed. They must make smaller cans.)
1/2 C shredded Cheddar cheese
Brown the ground beef and drain the grease. I added some chopped onion to the ground beef as it cooked. Stir in the seasoning, water, corn, peppers and tomato sauce. Pour into a baking dish (I used a 9x13" pan, though she suggests something smaller like a 2 qt. casserole.) Prepare muffin mix as directed, except add in 1/2 the can of french fried onions. Spoon the mixture around the edges of the casserole. Bake, uncovered for 20 minutes at 400 degrees. Top with cheese and the rest of the onions and bake a few more minutes until it's all melted.
Let me just say, do not fear the onions. It was not onion-y. It's actually kind of sweet. It tastes pretty much just like a taco, with corn bread instead of the taco shell.
Yummy and EASY!