(From the kitchen of Ruth Hebert)

Recently while shopping at Bridge City ’s Market Basket, I was approached by friend, Tom Perry.  A friend (Ruth Hebert) of his had given him this recipe and he was there to purchase the ingredients for it.  His wife, Jane, readily admits she doesn’t cook anymore.  They eat most of their meals at restaurants.  She says when she retired from her job, she also retired from cooking.  If any real cooking is done at their house, it’s usually Tom that does it.

Since Tom was not very familiar with Market Basket Grocery Store, I assisted him in locating the ingredients he needed.  I asked Tom if it turned out good would he share the recipe with me.  He said he would not only share the recipe but also bring some of it to Mac and me.  True to Tom’s word, a few hours later, he showed up at our door with said soup and recipe in hand.  Wasn’t that a nice gesture?

Tom had omitted the corn because he is on a special diet so I did add that to ours.  It is an excellent soup and a KEEPER for your recipe files.  Thanks Tom for your thoughtfulness and allowing me to share the recipe with the Record.

1 1⁄2 lb. extra lean ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1 (14 3⁄4 oz.)can whole kernel corn
1 (16 oz.) refried beans, optional (this is for extra thickness)
2 cups water
1⁄2 tsp. garlic powder
1 (4 oz.) can chopped green chilies
4 (15 1⁄2 oz.) cans pinto beans
1 (1 1⁄4 oz.) pkg. Taco seasoning mix
2 (14 1⁄2 oz.) cans diced tomatoes with juice
OR 1 (14 1⁄2 oz.) can diced tomatoes &
1 (10 oz.) can Rotel tomatoes
1 (1 oz,) pkg. dry Ranch Dressing Mix
1⁄2 tsp. salt
1⁄4 tsp. black pepper
Tortilla chips, corn chips or Cornbread
TOPPINGS (optional):
Shredded cheese
Sour cream

In a large soup stock pan, brown and scramble ground beef, drain if needed.  Add all remaining ingredients and mix well.  Cover and simmer soup for 1 to 2 hours, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.  Serve with tortilla chips, corn chip or cornbread.  If desired top with favorite hard cheese and a dollop of sour cream.
Ruth’s comment, “Enjoy.”