When we make dinner around here it's almost always something simple, and without a doubt, tacos debut at the top of our menu each week. They're just too easy to make: brown and season meat, chop up fresh veg, make some quick Spanish rice and you're pretty much good to go. The problem with having Taco Tuesday (or Wednesday, Thursday or Friday) weekly is that it can start getting mundane. We switch it up every once in awhile by having nacho cups (recipe coming soon) or even burritos, but my tastebuds have been craving a little something more.
The second I saw this Taco Pie I knew I hit dinner jackpot. I mean, come on, it's taco in pie form—what's not to love? The fact that it's also ridiculously simple to assemble and is bursting with zesty southwestern flavors are just added bonuses. This kind of reminded me of a Mexican version of shepherds (or cottage) pie, or even a taco enchilada, but I'm happy to keep calling it Taco Pie, because seriously, pie rocks.
adapted from Food Network Magazine
- 6 or 7 taco shelves, halved (12-14 pieces total, or make your own)
- 1/2 tablespoon oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes (or one can diced tomatoes + 2 Tbs tomato paste)
- 1/4 cup salsa (optional depending on how much spice you like)
- 8 ounces chopped green chiles
- 1 can corn, drained
- 7 ounces of cheese, divided (sharp cheddar, mozzarella, Colby & Monterey Jack, etc.)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 Celsius). Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions to the skillet and cook, stirring until soft and translucent. Add minced garlic and cayenne; stir and mix for about 30 seconds. Add ground beef, salt, garlic powder and cumin; cook, breaking up the meat, until browned. Stir in tomatoes, salsa, chile and corn; mix well. Bring to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
Arrange half of the tortillas in the bottom of a 9-to-10-inch pie plate (overlapping is fine; about 5 halves). Top with half of the meat mixture, then half of the cheese. Repeat with the remaining tortillas, meat and cheese. Cover loosely with foil and bake until the cheese melts, about 10 minutes. Slice, serve, and enjoy!
p.s. I could use some advice on how to take pictures of food when it's pitch black outside, your stomach is growling, and the last thing you want to do is let the food get cold to get a decent shot.