We had an aunt who served this special stew on every special occasion when we all got together. It brings back wonderful memories. The cinnamon adds a unique flavor.—Jeanette Lazary, Rochester, New York
Meet the Cook: This recipe came with me from New Mexico, where I lived years ago. It's been a hit at everything from a simple family supper to a church fellowship!
Our three daughters are 19, 17 and 6. My husband's a truck driver, and we live in town. But we also have an 80-acre farm, filled with pine trees, that belonged to my great-granddad - one day, we hope to build a house there.
-Patti Henson, Linden, Texas
Our whole family loves foods spiced with picante sauce, so I developed this recipe! This dish is very quick and easy to make, and it also reheats well. Sometimes I add cooked, sliced potatoes to the stew for a little variety, too.
This hearty stew is a favorite with our family, along with a basket of homemade breadsticks. Since lentils don't require the long soaking time that dried beans do, you can begin making this dish just an hour before supper—not the night before!—Carol Wolfer, Lebanon, Oregon
It's especially nice to use this recipe in fall, when the weather gets crisp and Nebraska's apple orchards start selling fresh apple cider. This entree's subtle sweetness is a welcome change from other savory stews. We enjoy it with biscuits and slices of apple and cheddar cheese.
-Joyce Glaesemann, Lincoln, Nebraska
"This is one of the tastiest stews I have ever made," notes Dixie Terry of Goreville, Illinois. "It's hearty and especially good for folks on restricted diets because most of its flavor comes from herbs and spices.
This thick zippy stew from Amy Short of Lesage, West Virginia is loaded with familiar ingredients, such as ground beef, tomatoes, kidney beans and chili beans. Chili powder and green chilies season it just right.