Fresh Mex Casserole

My husband likes this dish so much he claims he could eat it for a month and not tire of it. (I know him better, though.  Too much repetition ruins things for him.  Remind me to tell you sometime about how much he hates having a song stuck in his head!)

Anyway, back to the dish at hand. At our house it’s a winner.  Everyone likes it.  It’s also simple and easy to make.

Fresh Mex Casserole Ingredients:
2 cups crushed tortilla chips 1 pound lean ground beef 2 cups salsa, your choice 1 can chili beans 1 1/2 cups sour cream 1/2 cup chopped green onions 3/4 cup chopped tomato 1/2 cup chopped cilantro 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese Spray bottom of 9×13 inch pan lightly with cooking spray.  Spread crushed tortilla chips over bottom of pan.

In a large skillet, brown the ground beef.  Add salsa and reduce heat to simmer until the liquid is almost absorbed.  Add chili beans and heat through.  Spoon meat mixture over crushed tortilla chips.

Carefully spread 1 1/2 cups sour cream over the meat.  Sprinkle onions, tomatoes, cilantro and cheese over the sour cream.

Look how delicious it looks!

Preheat oven to 350 and bake for 20-30 minutes or until bubbly.  Share with your family.  I hope you love it!

Tomato Quiche

This dish is one of my favorite ways to make use of late summer’s abundant tomato harvest.  It’s also a tasty meatless dish with a lot of flavor.  We especially like the cornmeal crust which adds a nice texture to the quiche.

Tomato Quiche Crust:
3/4 cup flour 1/2 cup cornmeal 1/2 tsp. salt 1/8 tsp. pepper 1/3 cup shortening 6 Tb. cold water Filling:
2 cups chopped tomatoes 1 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp. dried basil 1/8 tsp. pepper 1/2 cup chopped green onions 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese 1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese 1 cup evaporated milk 2 Tb. flour 2 eggs To make the crust:
In a bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, salt and pepper.   Cut in shortening until crumbly.  Add water one tablespoon at a time, tossing with a fork until the dough forms a ball.  Refrigerate 30 minutes.  On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to fit a 9 inch pie plate.  Transfer dough to pie dish, trim and flute edges.  Bake at 375 for 10 minutes, then cool completely.

Note:  If you’re like me, and you’re committed to this recipe and suddenly your baby starts screaming, you can do what I did, and just press the crust into the pan without rolling it out.   It’s not as pretty, but it works.

Once the crust is cool, fill with tomatoes.  Sprinkle tomatoes with salt, pepper and basil.  Add the onions and finally the cheeses.

In a small bowl, whisk together flour, eggs and evaporated milk until smooth.  Pour over the filling.

Bake at 375 for 40-45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.  Enjoy!

Basil Shrimp Pasta

I made this for the first time at the beginning of the summer, and it was a hit.  A few minor adjustments and it’s now a family favorite.  My six year old even requested it for her birthday dinner.

Basil Shrimp Pasta Ingredients:

1 pound peeled, deveined, cooked shrimp.  (I use the 71-90 count.  They’re smaller, which is great for my younger children and also allows more shrimp per bite without spending a fortune.)
1 medium zucchini, sliced and quartered 1 cup Kraft Sun Dried Tomato Salad Dressing 2 cups water 2 tsp. chicken bullion 8 oz. Neufchatel cheese fresh basil (about 6-8 leaves) 1/3 cup parmesan cheese 3 cups uncooked farfalle (bow-tie pasta) If you purchased frozen shrimp, thaw it.

Cook pasta according to directions on package.

Pour 3 Tb. Sun Dried Tomato dressing into a large skillet.  Add chopped zucchini and stir.  Cook over medium heat until zucchini is tender.

Add water, bullion and remaining salad dressing to skillet.  Cook for about 2 minutes, to heat through.  Add Neufchatel cheese and shrimp.  Cook and stir 2-3 minutes to heat shrimp and melt cheese.

Drain pasta and add to skillet.  Stir to coat pasta.  Slice basil leaves into thin strips.  Add basil and parmesan cheese to pasta, stir lightly.  Serve and enjoy!

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