Sunday, December 13, 2009

Homemade Teacher's Gifts

Whew! I just finished putting together all our gifts for the many teachers in the lives of my kiddo's. It is a task that I truly love. I enjoy giving gifts to those people I adore and like to make them special with all the wrapping and trimmings. Being a former teacher, I know what it is like to recive presents that are truly gifts from the heart of parents and students so I have always wanted to present the men and women who pour alot into my kids, gifts that they will not only use and enjoy but have a specialness attached to them. Well, this year was a little difficult in that I haven't really gotten to know Cody and Grace's teachers that well. I was really at a loss concerning Cody's teachers and was going to resort to the simplicity of giftcards until I came across this in a Paula Deen magazine......

It is a Taco Chili Mix. I made certain that it was tasty by trying it a few nights ago and after determining that it was DELICIOUS, I decided to made a bunch of these cute little jars for all of Cody's teachers. My nana always told me that presentation was everything so I found the jars at Target for $3.99, the ribbon at Hobby Lobby and dusted off the cobwebs of my Creative Memories scrapbooking tub and created the tags. Oh, how I hope his teachers will enjoy having a chili mix already prepared on a cold snowy night, I know that I would. Here's the assembly direction in case you want to try for a gift or just for your family.

Taco Chili Mix
1 cup of dried kidney beans
1 cup of pinto beans
1 (2.5 ounce) package of taco seasoning mix
1 (1 ounce) package of ranch dressing mix
3 tablespoons of minced onion
1 tablespoon of chili powder
2 teaspoons of cumin
In a decorative jar; layer kidney beans and pinto beans. In a small bowl, combine taco seasoning mix, ranch dressing mix, onion, chili powder, and cumin. Spoon into a plastic bag and place over beans. Seal jar and decorate with ribbion and cute recipe tag that gives these instructions:
Taco Chili
Makes 6-8 servings

1 jar of Taco Chili Mix
5 cups of water
2 (16-ounce) cans tomato sauce
1 (20-ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chilies
1 (1-pound) package ground chuck, cooked and drained
Tortilla chips, shredded Cheddar cheese (optional)
In a large Dutch oven, add beans from Taco Chili Mix
and water to cover. Let stand for at least 8 hours; drain.
Stir in Taco Chili Mix seasoning bag, water, tomato sauce,and diced tomatos, stiring to combine. Stir in cooked ground chuck. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; reduce heat, and simmer for 2 hours or until beans are tender. Serve with tortilla chips and cheese, if desired.

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