Simple meal to warm you up

Hi all! I’m Rowaine – mother of too many, reader and writer of fanfiction, and old-school crafter. At a later date, I’ll probably be back to talk about books and maybe writing styles, but today is about ‘good eats.’ When my oldest son went off to college, he begged me to send a cookbook of my simpler recipes so he didn’t have to live off of dorm food. Here’s a couple of his favorites:

2×2 Chili – his name for it

2 lbs ground meat (your choice, tho I prefer beef, turkey, and deer in some combination)
2 cans Rotel diced tomatoes (choose your favorite level of heat)
2 cans diced tomatoes (or double the Rotel for stronger flavor)
2 Tbsp Chili Powder
2 Tbsp Cayenne Powder
2 pks Taco Seasoning (your own heat level. and yes, it’s a cheat – recipe made for college kid)
4 Tbsp minced garlic (2 to cook in with the meat, 2 to go in the general pot)
2 small onions, diced
2 large cans tomato juice (it’ll boil down!)
2 cans dark kidney beans, drained
2 cans tomato paste
salt and pepper to taste

I use a stock pot, but any large pot will do, or a crockpot if yours is bigger than mine.

Open all cans and empty into pot, turning heat to medium. Add one diced onion and 2 Tbsp minced garlic, plus all powder/seasonings.
Brown meat with 2 Tbsp garlic and other diced onion. Drain well, add to pot, and simmer.

It’s edible immediately after it comes to a bubble, but IMO tastes better the longer you let it percolate πŸ˜‰ Freezes *beautifully*!

Top with shredded cheese, chopped onions and tomatoes, sour cream, or whatever combination you prefer. He makes a batch of Jiffy corn bread to go along with it. Also tastes great over a baked potato, and leftovers work well on burgers or hotdogs.


2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
1/2 cup shortening
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar, plus 3 tablespoons
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Sift the flour, baking soda, and salt into a bowl.
With a handheld or standing mixer, beat together the shortening and butter. Add the 1 1/2 cups sugar and continue beating until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the flour mixture and blend until smooth.
Mix the 3 tablespoons sugar with the cinnamon in a small bowl. Roll the dough, by hand, into 1 1/2-inch balls. Roll the balls in the cinnamon sugar. Flatten the balls into 1/2-inch thick disks, spacing them evenly on unlined cookie sheets. Bake until light brown, but still moist in the center, between 9 and 12 minutes.

— Alternative instructions, for the college boy mind πŸ˜‰
Preheat oven to 350F
Dump all dry ingredients in a bowl (except sugar) and whisk together, leaving out a small bit of cinnamon and sugar for later.
Beat the hell out of sugar, butter and shortening til you can make ‘mountains’ with it, then add eggs. When there’s no more lumps, include the dry mess and repeat. Yes, it’ll feel like playdough – it’s supposed to.
With the rest of the sugar and cinnamon in a small plate, make balls of the dough and smush them into the cinnasugar. Place on cookie sheet cinnasugar-side up and pop in the oven. Stand there and watch them melt into golden deliciousness – do NOT go back to your online games or you’ll ruin them! About 10 minutes, or 3 songs on the radio, they’ll be ready. If you try to inhale them immediately, have cold milk ready – you’ll burn your mouth.

And just in case you want to switch things around, this cookie recipe is a terrific base for other flavors:

1. Subtract cinnamon, add 1 cup of chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, or any combination of “chips”.
2. Subtract cinnamon, add 1 cup of peanut butter.
3. Subtract cinnamon, bake as instructed, while cooling brush on thin layer of butter and dust with sugar.
4. Subtract original cinnamon measurement, using 1 teaspoon instead, add 2 cups of oatmeal (1 cup of raisins, optional).

2 thoughts on “Simple meal to warm you up

  1. I know those cookies! I love those cookies! I need to make myself another batch or two to freeze and have them on hand lol.
    Can’t wait to try that chili, too.

    Thanks for being my guest, Rowaine!


  2. Pingback: Unexpected | Another Piece of Me

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