Pasta shells are always a comfort dish in my home. This recipe is a riff on Naomi’s classic pasta shells. But instead of going the traditional route, I decided to inject her recipe with some of my Mexican-food-loving touch.
It turned out better than I expected. I am so happy with the results. But I’m even more happy because the family went crazy for them. That’s the upside.
The downside is, I get more dinner duties because they want to see what else I can turn out.
I’m not sure what the next comfort dish turn wild will be, but if you have suggestions—leave them in the comment section.
- 1 lb. large jumbo pasta shells
- .75lb. ground beef
- 4 tablespoons preferred taco seasoning
- 2 cups ricotta cheese
- 4 cups Mexican cheese, divided use
- ¼ cup chopped black olives
- ¼ cup diced green chilies
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 2 large eggs
- 16oz. enchilada sauce
- 4 oz. heavy cream
- Cook pasta shells according to instructions on the box; set aside.
- Add ground beef and taco seasoning in a large skillet and cook over medium heat until browned. Drain and set aside to cool completely.
- In a large bowl, mix and combine ricotta cheese, 2 cups of cheese, black olives, green chilies, garlic salt, onion salt, salt and cumin. Add cooled ground beef and mix to combine. Create a well in the center of mixture and add eggs; lightly beat. Mix beaten eggs into mixture. Now heat oven to 375 degrees. Transfer mixture to a plastic bag and cut off a corner. Pipe mixture into shells.
- In another large bowl, mix and combine enchilada sauce and heavy cream. Add half of sauce into casserole pan. Add filled pasta shells side-by-side. Transfer casserole to oven and bake at 375 degrees until cheese is bubbly, about 25 minutes. Remove from oven and cool slightly before serving.