South of the Boarder Stuffed Pasta Shells

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These jumbo shells stuffed with Mexican style ground beef and cheese are incredibly delicious.

Step 1: Ingredients:

12 Jumbo Pasta Shells

1 lb. ground beef

1 small onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 12 oz. jar Picante Sauce, medium or hot

1 8 oz. tomato sauce

½ cup beef stock, or water

½ tsp. ground cumin

Salt and pepper to taste

1 4 oz. can Chopped Green Chilies, drained, mild or hot

1 cup (4oz) Monterey Jack Cheese, shredded

1 (2.8 oz.) can Durkee French Fried Onions

Step 2: Directions:

Preheat oven 350°.

Step 3: Shells:

Cook the pasta in boiling salted water for 9 minutes, according to the package directions.

Step 4: Beef:

In a sauté pan, add the ground beef and cook until browned, breaking the meat up as it cooks.

Step 5:

When the beef is almost cooked through, drain. Add the onion and sauté until softened - about 4 - 5 minutes.

Step 6:

Add garlic and cook for another minute or two.

Step 7:

Stir in the cumin salt and pepper.

Step 8:

In a bowl, combine Picante Sauce, tomato sauce and beef stock.

Step 9:

Add ½ cup of the Picante/tomato mixture to the ground beef mixture.

Step 10:

Then add the green chilies and ½ cup shredded Monterey Jack Cheese, mixing to combine.

Step 11:

Then add the ½ cup Durkee French Fried Onions, mixing to combine.

Step 12: Casserole Dish:

Pour ½ of the remaining Picante/tomato mixture into the bottom of an 8” x 2” casserole dish.

Step 13: Assembling Shells:

Spoon a heaping tablespoon meat mixture into each shell.

Step 14:

Arrange the stuffed shells (placing the shells close together so they don't dry out and become hard while baking) over sauce in baking dish.

Step 15:

Pour the remaining Picante/tomato over the shells.

Step 16:

Cover tightly with aluminum foil.

Step 17:

Place in preheated oven, and bake for 30 minutes.

Step 18: 30 Minutes Later:

After 30 minutes of baking, remove the shells from oven.

Step 19:

Remove the aluminum foil, top the shells with the remaining shredded Monterey Jack Cheese and French Fried Onions.

Step 20:

Return shells to oven and bake another 5 minutes, or until the Monterey Jack Cheese is melted.

Step 21: Serving:

Serve immediately as is or, garnish with your choice of toppings, dollops of sour cream, Picante Sauce, Monterey Jack Cheese, or Durkee French Fried Onions.

Yields: 6 servings.

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