I always start my meal planning for the week by taking inventory of what we have, and what needs to be used up. Often, that means re-imagining leftovers. This dish got added to the menu, though, simply because we already had guacamole in the fridge.
Whether the guacamole is really important to the sandwich is debatable. I’m not a huge guacamole fan and could have easily left it off and not missed it – my husband, on the other hand, was a big fan. Guacamole or not, though, these sandwiches are delicious.
Tex Mex Sloppy Joes
(from Smells Like Home, adapted from Homesick Texan)
1 can (14.5 oz) tomato sauce
1 chipotle chile in adobo
2 t. oregano
2 t. ground cumin
1 t. smoked paprika
1/4 t. ground allspice
Pinch of cayenne
2 t. Worcestershire sauce
1 1/4 lbs. ground chicken, turkey, or beef
1 t. canola oil
1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
12 oz. beer, such as a light ale or lager
2 T. ketchup
1/4 c. cilantro
1 T. lime juice
Salt and black pepper to taste
Hamburger buns, cheddar cheese and guacamole, for serving
In a food processor, combine the tomato sauce, chipotle chile, oregano, ground cumin, smoked paprika, allspice, cayenne and Worcestershire sauce. Puree until smooth.
In a large skillet over medium heat, brown the ground meat, stirring occasionally until no longer pink, about 10 minutes. Drain off the fat. Add the canola oil to the pan with the browned meat then stir in the onions. Cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Stir in the tomato mixture, along with the beer, ketchup and cilantro until well combined.
Let all ingredients come to a low simmer and then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook uncovered for 15 minutes. Stir in the lime juice and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Serve on warmed buns with guacamole.