Sep 22, 2011

Fiesta Shells and Cheese and THANKS

First, let me just say THANK YOU.
Thank you for all of your well wishes, your thoughts of happiness, your empathy of my sickness,
your excitement, and your general kindness.

This baby was a surprise, but we are excited to start this journey again.
Thanks for letting me share it with you.

Today I am sharing a family friendly twist on macaroni and cheese. 

Fiesta Shells and Cheese.

Way back in our newlywed and early parenthood days, we had a cheeseburger pasta dish that we made all the time. Hubby LOVED it. I only had slightly fond feelings towards the dish. Basically it was similar to a homemade hamburger helper (eck, pleh, barf). The recipe called for two kinds of canned soup. Again, easy recipe, not terribly bad, but not my idea of a great dinner...sorry Hubby.

Several weeks ago I ran across a different recipe for cheeseburger macaroni. I looked over it and noticed that it seemed like a grown up, yet kid-friendly version of our newlywed recipe.

The name of her recipe was a little deceiving. There were several Mexican ingredients called for. So once we made it I decided that it was more like a taco...aka fiesta in macaroni and cheese form. The only changes I made were obviously I used shells....they hold all the cheesy taco-ey goodness just wonderfully. I also added a side of sour cream to cut the spiciness of the dish for my little ones. If you would like to cut some of the spiciness you could always use plain diced tomatoes instead of Rotel.

We like taco themed meals in this house. This dish paired with some fresh pineapple was a great family meal.

Fiesta Shells and Cheese  
Kevin and Amanda  


1 lb lean hamburger meat
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 can Rotel tomatoes and green chilies (or petite diced tomatoes)
2 cups beef broth 
1 cup shell pasta

Cheese Sauce:
2 Tablespoons butter
2 tbsp flour
3/4 cup milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Brown and drain hamburger meat. Stir in taco seasoning, Rotel, beef broth, and macaroni. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat and cover pan. Simmer 12-14 mins until macaroni is tender.

While this is simmering, start making your from-scratch-cheese-sauce.

Melt the butter in a saucepan on med heat. Whisk in the flour and cook, whisking for 5 minutes until fragrant and light brown in color. Whisk in the milk and bring to a boil. Whisk until smooth and thickened. Remove from heat and stir in the shredded cheddar cheese until melted. Add the salt and pepper to the cheese sauce. 

Pour the cheese sauce over the hamburger mixture. Stir gently to combine.

Add a side of sour cream. Cut up some pineapple. Make it a meal.


Spencer said...

As her husband I must add the truth about the newlywed recipe--looking back she may cringe but at the time she loved it too. She just won't admit it. ;)

Larissa@Just Another Day in Paradise said...

Hahaha...funny Hubby!

Celeste said...

Lol! You guys are funny ;) This looks yummy! I will definitely try it!

tara said...

so i just read that you've been sicker than normal and i did not read what everyone else said, so i might be repeating someone when i say that i was MUCH sicker with my girl as were many other ladies i consulted with. not sure if this means anything to you, but it might just be a little lady!! if you need anything, let me know. i have roughly a million bows and frills that are virtually unused thanks to the fact that my daughter will not wear them...ever. awesome.

good luck!!! love you!


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