Soothe the soul

I am all about comfort... comfortable shoes, comfortable clothes, comfortable life. The first thing I do after a hard day of work is jump into a nice, warm shower and change into my flannel pjs, all in the name of comfort. You won't find me in clothes that bind or shoes that sir!

And so it was no wonder that I felt compelled to participate in Meeta's Monthly Mingle once I saw the Comfort Food theme. Stick-to-your-ribs foods of sustenance come into play this time of year particularly because of the cold weather. People want to hibernate, sit by a warm fire and enjoy the slower, more relaxed pace that comes with cold weather. I know I am not alone in wanting to do all of these warm and fuzzy things - I also see it with my catering clients. Last week, I had three requests for pans of our lasagna and knowing all too well the need to feed cold bones and shivering souls, I was happy to oblige.

The meals coming out of my personal kitchen have been laden with starch and much heavier than usual - beef tips over noodles, lasagna, pork chops with mac & cheese, and one of my all-time favorite pasta meals, South of the Border Stuffed Shells (or as my staff affectionately calls them, SOBs). I love these shells because I typically get caught up in the idea that everything pasta should be Italian but stuffed with ground beef, green chilies, and topped with picante sauce, these are far from that mind set. This is a great recipe for preparing ahead and storing unbaked in your freezer. So while these are baking, put on your flannel jammies, wrap up in a blankie on the couch in front of the fire, pop a movie in the DVD, enjoy and most importantly...stay warm!

* Exported from MasterCook *

South of the Border Stuffed Shells

Recipe By
Serving Size : 6
Categories : Beef Pasta

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
24 jumbo pasta shells
1 16 oz. jar picante sauce (I use medium, but if you like it hot, go for it!)
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
1 medium onion -- chopped
2 cloves garlic -- minced
1 pound lean ground beef
1 tsp chili powder
1 4 oz. can green chiles -- chopped
1/2 cup canned corn -- drained
1 cup monterey jack cheese -- grated

Prepare pasta according to package directions; drain.
Mix picante sauce, tomato sauce and water in small bowl. In a skillet, cook onion, garlic and ground beef over medium heat until meat is browned and onion is tender. Remove from heat and drain off fat. Add chili powder, chopped green chilies, corn, 1/2 cup shredded cheese and 1/2 cup picante sauce mixture to meat mixture.
Preheat oven to 350F. Pour half of remaining picante sauce mixture in bottom of 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish. Fill each cooked shell with 1 to 2 tablespoons of mixture and place shells in baking dish. Pour remaining picante mixture over top of shells. Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 350F for 20 to 30 minutes. Uncover, add remaining 1/2 cup cheese and bake, uncovered, an additional 5 minutes until cheese melts. Serve immediately.

* This recipe can be assembled and frozen. To bake, thaw at room temperature for 8 hours and bake as directed above.


MeetaK said...

Pasta is always comforting. I love this. Perfect!

Brilynn said...

If I could live in jogging pants, I would. This dish sounds wonderful! Shells are my fav pasta shape.

Panhandle Poet said...

Mmmm, looks good. Mexican food stays on our menu.


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