Thursday, September 1, 2011

Ranch Recipe #3

My Parents, Tecalitlan, Mexico
(from L-R: our oldest daughter Heather, my father, my backside, my mother,
my husband John and our youngest daughter Katherine.
Our middle daughter Lauren must have been taking the picture.)
I have shared before that ‘making a round’ has always been
one of my family’s favorite things to do.

This photo was taken on a Saturday afternoon, long ago,
when we were
on such a round,
checking one of my father’s crops.
In this case he was growing onions.

I am sure he let one of my girls drive us there.

This was the farming of my life.

In addition to managing a ranch,
my father also farmed ‘on the side’.

So farming for me was about my father,
my brother, John Deere tractors and equipment,
and farm land owned and leased in
areas of South Texas like Ricardo, Fronton, Palito Blanco, Benavides,
Delmita, and finally
on his farm El Perdido in Starr County.
He farmed as little as 200 acres when he first started
as a young man
and up to
4500 acres as his ‘on the side’
farming operation grew.

He grew grain, cotton, watermelons, cantelope, and onions-
all at different times.

Farming for my family
was not the storybook picture
we see in movies,
but rather

the merciless heat of South Texas,
low slung ranch houses with big rooms,
bird hunting if your farm land had a water hole,
cattle guards,
locked gates built out of heavy iron pipe,
and caliche roads. 
This following recipe is great after making a round.
Ranch Recipe #5
Picadillo Dip
2 pounds Velveeta cheese
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1 (8 ounce) can sliced mushrooms
1 (10 ounce ) can tomatoes and chiles
1 (6 ounce) can pitted, sliced black olives
Brown ground beef and onions. Drain.
Melt Velveeta in your crock pot.
Add all ingredients, including the ground beef mixture.
Stir to mix.
Serve with fritos.
*Note:  You could drizzle this on a concrete block, and it would taste good.
Serve when the first norther blows in or while watching college
football on tv.
Linking to:


Patty Marker said...

I love your memories they always make me think of my own childhood. We had picadillo con pappas at least once a week growning up, I'm sure because it was a budget stretcher with five kids to feed. We also had spam and a weiners and green beans but that's another story. I've never had picadillo as dip with velveeta. It actually sounds yummy with some tortilla chips a cold beer or a margarita.

Pondside said...

The dip sounds like a keeper - a good one for when it starts to get damp and cold.

Deb said...

sounds yummy...I love when you tell us about your can feel the love in your words...

Theresa said...

What a sweet memory of farm living! I love it! I lived on a farm too growing up, but a 10 acre farm! My Dad grew what we ate:)

Thanks for the recipe, sounds delicious! Have a blessed day dear Laura, HUGS!

trash talk said...

Your mother was a wonder you were in a beauty contest! BTW...if you won a tiara in addition to the fifty bucks...I think you should wear it to Zapp!
I'm amazed your daddy could fit everything in he did. Not many men around like that anymore.
P.S. Because I'm lazy and don't want to be bothered with chopping onions and tomatoes...I call that dip...Rotel!

Marigene said...

Living here in the midwest, I have found out what hard work farming can be, plus you are at the mercy of mother nature. I have made this many times minus the mushrooms, never thought to put them time I definitely will.

Lisa said...

This sounds great! Your Mama was one heck of a cook!

Honey at 2805 said...

Love the story about your family! I will be serving your dip when and if we ever have a norther! And I'm wondering if anyone other than those of us who grew up in certain parts of Texas know what caliche is.

I saw you beauty queen post. Very cute. I was a High School Sweetheart of a couple of clubs, one being...oh well. I wanted to enter a local beauty pagent, but my Dad would have none of it since it would require wearing a swim suit in public!

Thank you for linking to Potpourri Friday and helping to make it a success! I appreciate you and hope you wil link up again next week!

Rebecca Nelson said...

I'm sooo going to try this dip recipe!

I knew that was your backside! :)



D.B. said...

Oh my! We make this dip and refer to it as "Hey, remember the 80's?" Velveeta like leopard print is timeless. Check out your mom!!! I see where you got your sense of style. She is rockin' it among the onions. And yes, I was born in North Texas......what is a caliche road? I feel like it's a road Gus McCrea might take on his way to a picnic with Clara.

Sandra said...

Love your family stories! I always picture you in the movie "Giant" starring Elizabeth Taylor. Love that movie. Their farming was of the "oily" nature, and it served them very well in "millions" of ways. xoxo

Ocean Breezes and Country Sneezes said...

Thank you for sharing your family memories and recipe! What a lovely tribute to your dad on Labor Day weekend.


Anonymous said...

Laura, you are so funny - that last part just makes me laugh - 'you could drizzle this stuff on a concrete block and it would taste good'
cracks me up!

but your stories carry me away, just like a Cormac McCarthy novel. and I'm right there out in the blistering heat listening to the grasshoppers buzzing as they jump through the fields and breathing in that dusty hot Texas morning. Thank you for the journey and thank you for generously sharing your own family memories.

xo, Diane

Made In The South said...

What a wonderful memory to share. I am sure it was not an easy life for your father, but surely he would not have had it any other way.
I love the picture with the onions...
Will have to try out your dip. Anything with olives is gonna be a favorite.
Have a fabulous weekend,

Marguerite said...

Wonderful memories! Wow, 4500 acres, now that's some serious farming. Love this dip and it sounds scrumptious! Thanks for the great recipe!

Ellen said...

Its so nice to have such memories to share. Thank you for the wonderful recipe, its football season and my house will enjoy this dip.

Debra@CommonGround said...

Such great family pics, Laura. This recipe sounds amazing, perfect for Fall. Anything with doritos is yummy. xoxo Debra


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