Our "mandatory Mexican" flavors this week came in the form of pasta mixed with ground beef, salsa, and of course, cheese. This stuff is simple to whip up on a busy week night, and my kids loved it. I don't think my six year old has eaten faster! It is really good...
I would recommend going with a smaller dried pasta, such as shells, elbows, or wheels. Oh man, I miss wheels. Sorry, focusing...Penne would probably be o.k. as well. I also, inadvertently, used my cream cheese to make icing for a cake, so I just threw in about a half cup of shredded cheddar cheese along with the sour cream. I think it was a great substitute. We had no leftovers :)
- 1 pound (450 g) ground beef
- 8 ounces (226 g) small dry pasta shapes
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 cup (240 mL) salsa
- 1 packet taco seasoning
- 3 ounces (85 g) cream cheese
- 1/2 cup (113 g) sour cream
- Salt and pepper
- Shredded Cheese for topping
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook pasta according to the package directions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of pasta water. Set aside.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook the ground meat and onion over medium-high heat until no longer pink. Once the meat is cooked through, drain off the excess fat and mix in the garlic. Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Mix in the salsa and taco seasoning and let simmer over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Stir in the cooked pasta, cream cheese, sour cream and reserved pasta water, and continue stirring until the cream cheese is melted and the sauce is well blended. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Top with shredded cheese and more sour cream and salsa if desired.