Mexican Stuffed Shells

Mexican Stuffed Shells

Organizing recipes has come a long way since I first started collecting them. Before I owned a computer, I would clip recipes from magazines, copy them down from friends, or type them out from cookbooks I borrowed from the library. They were all stored in a green 3-ring binder, which I still have in my pantry. Things are falling out of it and nothing is very organized about it, but, somehow, I can’t throw it away. I can’t remember the last time I cooked anything from it, but I can tell you where every recipe came from and when I found it, just by looking at the paper it’s on. Although clipping recipes has gotten so much easier  (by orders of magnitude), and organizing them is just a matter of a click of a button, there are certain things I miss about the stacks of clippings falling out of notebooks. There is no sense of history when recipes are on your computer. I love looking at the handwriting on my grandmother’s recipe cards and that will be gone for my grandkids. It will all be cold and sterile, and I think something important will be lost when that happens. This recipe for Stuffed Mexican Shells for instance; I have absolutely no idea where it came from. It has been on my computer for years, but for some reason I never got around to actually making it until this week. It was a great meal, but there is no history to it. I may have found it in a cookbook, years ago, or I could have gotten it from a friend. Yes, it is still good, but maybe the reason it took me so long to make it was because I had no sense of where it came from. Maybe I need to start using a pen and paper again…

Mexican Stuffed Shells Mexican Stuffed Shells

Mexican Stuffed Shells

1 pound ground beef 
1 cup onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup salsa
1/4 cup light sour cream
1 package pasta shells
cheddar cheese, grated
shredded lettuce
tomato, diced and seeded
sour cream

Preheat oven to 350. In a large skillet, combine beef, onion, garlic. Cook over medium high heat, stirring frequently to break up the beef, until the beef is browned and the onion is translucent, about 5 mins.

Add the chili powder, cumin, oregano and salt; toss to mix well and cook for about 1 minute. Stir in the salsa; stirring frequently for about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the sour cream. Let it cool slightly.

Stuff the shells evenly with the meat mixture, mounding slightly. Arrange the shells in the baking pan and cover with foil. Bake for 15 minutes. Uncover and sprinkle evenly with cheese. Bake, uncovered, just until the cheese melts, about 1-2 minutes. Top the shells evenly with lettuce and tomatoes. Serve with sour cream. 

Mexican Stuffed Shells Mexican Stuffed Shells

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