Sunday, March 15, 2009

A Forgotten Favorite

I say this is forgotten because it's been sitting in my picture folder untouched for over a year. I have been cooking recipes that I have blogged about before, so rather than do duplicates, I have been diving into my archive folder. I am not quite sure why I didn't post it when I first made it. I probably got too busy with school or work. At any rate, don't let its lateness trick you. And don't let the really terrible picture fool you either. This recipe is very good.

The only complaint I have about this one (and it's minor) is that the cooking time in the cookbook is off. That could be the fault of my crockpot also. So, I really shouldn't even consider it a complaint. The cooking time says 6-8 hours on low or 3-4 on high. However, when I made it, it was done within 3 hours on low. So, you might want to watch your crockpot carefully if you make this one.

When I made this, I decided to do a whole theme to our eats. The Taco Bake along with salsa, sour cream and tortillas to wrap everything up in. I will admit now that the tortillas didn't get used. With the macaroni, you don't need an extra starch. The Taco Bake is yummy enough on its own.

This recipe can easily be altered to make it lighter. For example, use ground turkey or chicken in place of the ground beef. Or, if you really want to use the ground beef, use 95% fat free. Also, cut back on the amount of cheese that you use. Especially since it's just a topper to the Taco Bake and doesn't get mixed in.

I haven't made very many recipes out of this cookbook, but as I glance back through it, there are lots of them that sound good. I love using my slow cooker and am always up for trying new items. So, here's to more recipes using the crockpot! As a matter of fact, it's Salsa Chicken night in my house. Yummmm, I can smell it cooking.

Taco Bake
from: 365 Favorite Brand Name Slow Cooker Recipes

1 pound ground beef
1 onion, chopped
1/4 water
1 package (1.25 oz) taco seasoning
1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce
1 packgae (8 oz) shell macaroni
1 can (4 oz) mild chopped green chilies
2 cups mild shredded Cheddar cheese

1. In a large skillet, brown ground beef and onion; drain fat. Add water, taco seasoning and tomato sauce; mix. Simmer 20 minutes.

2. Transfer to the slow cooker. Stir in macaroni and chopped chilies. Cover and cook on Low 6-8 hours or High 3-4 hours. In last 30 minutes of cooking, top with shredded cheese.