musings about food, travel, creativity and life

“Keep It Simple”


Like some of you perhaps, I have been slow to do any indoor entertaining. But this past week, a friend returning to California provided the perfect impetus to finally break into the next stage of life on the planet.

Since it was going to be a hot day and I was way out of practice as a hostess, I wanted to “keep it simple.”

So I did. For one thing, there were only five of us and each person contributed to the meal. Lucky for me. A local friend and her hubby provided the Prosecco cocktails and a dessert of homemade blackberry pie—delightful gifts. And our guest brought flowers and a Brut Rosé for the meal—more gifts. I assembled a large Taco Salad and set the table with lots of over-the-top color.

I imagine all of you have a Taco Salad recipe, but here’s my “no-recipe” recipe…just in case…


Taco Salad    


       Lettuce—I used packaged spring mix, spinach, and Iceberg lettuce, but almost anything goes.

       Avocados, cut in bite-size chunks

       Cherry tomatoes

       Corn kernels

       Sliced green onions or chives

       Black olives, sliced

       Kidney or black beans

       Shredded cheddar cheese (I used packaged pre-shredded Mexican blend) 

       Ground turkey (or beef or chicken), up to ¼ lb per person, browned and combined with a package of taco seasoning sauce mix according to directions (this is what I did!) or if you’re feeling more adventurous, you can create your own browned chili mix with onions, tomato sauce, chili powder, a touch of cumin, salt/pepper…

       Crushed tortilla chips

       Thousand Island Dressing—mayonnaise, catsup, lemon juice, water, a few dashes of hot sauce, mixed thoroughly


Find a favorite large-enough-for-tossing ceramic or glass bowl. Place lettuce in first, then “artistically” arrange the other ingredients on top, gauging the proportions of each ingredient as you go. Bring it to the table and when ready, toss with the dressing. Accompany with chips, salsa, and guacamole, and there you have it! Enjoy!

Ah, yes. Breathe in. Breathe out. Remember what it is like to see smiles. Smile. Remember what it is like to share meals around the table, whether inside or out. Smile again. And pray that the summer is kind to everyone in everyway.

Buon appetito, all. Happy Father’s Day, Happy Solstice, Happy Summer! WOW!!


10 thoughts on ““Keep It Simple””

  • I love this idea Lynn. You always set a beautiful, colorful table. Happy summer. I know Sun Valley awaits and will be wonderful.

  • Ahhhhhh….the famous Lynn Archer Taco Salad that I have been lucky enough to experience at your wonderful home. So glad to hear that you are once again enjoying the company of friends, sharing all of your fun dishes and loving life. Derek and I look forward to hanging with the Archers again soon. Ciao, Ciao

  • Love love love this picture.
    So colorful and looks delicious.
    Will definitely try your recipe.
    Thank you for sharing all of your wonderful ideas.

    • Thanks, Mary Lou. It was a fun night! Hope you enjoy your Taco Salad when the spirit moves you. Thanks for continuing to be a part of the Bring Joy to the Table community.

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