Wow was this ever a walk down memory lane.  Years ago...too many to count, we had a drive-in restaurant.  You would literally pull into a spot under their covered roof, then your server would roller blade over to your window and take your order.  Yes on actual roller blades!  Now, while this was technically a "burger" joint they were also famous for their root beer.  So you would place your order and happily await the oh so delicious mug of root beer.  Plus a secret: for a short time (not sure how long) they had the most delicious beef tacos I have ever tasted. And do you know what else I realized?  They actually cooked the food.  I don't mean pre-cooked and reheated.  It was actually cooked on this was the real deal.  Back then this was considered fast food.  But it really wasn't.  We had to wait.  And I do mean wait.  I have tried many a time to replicate this recipe...but it is just not the same... sigh.  That said, this recipe is pretty darn close and still pretty dang tasty if I do say so myself.

Yup, while those days are long gone...and with the current times we are now in.... we need all the happy memories we can get 🙂

1 l.b extra lean ground beef

1  156 ml can of tomato paste plus 1 -2 cans of water

1/2 a large onion - finely diced

3 minced garlic cloves

2 rounded Tblsp. chili powder - or to taste

1 Tblsp. ground garlic powder

1 heaping tsp. Cumin

1/2  tsp. smoked Paprika

salt and pepper to taste

Additions:  diced tomatoes, diced romaine lettuce, salsa, guacamole, grated sharp cheddar cheese, chopped green onion

Heat up a medium sized saute pan on low/medium heat.  Add the ground beef, and break up with a wooden spoon.  Cook until all the pink is gone, then add in the onions, garlic and spices stirring well.  Continue to cook a good 6-8 minutes or until the onion is cooked through.  Add in the tomato paste and 1 can of water.  Bring to a low simmer and cook, stirring from time to time and adjust the amount of water and seasonings to taste.  Simmer another 20-30 min.

Serve in a heated corn taco shell with all the toppings - and if out of taco shells, nacho chips work great!


Ina Gawne


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