Saturday, June 15, 2013

enchilada stuffed shells

I love this recipe! I saw it a long, long, long time ago on Food Gawker, (which is, by the by, and ah-mazing site to check out beautiful food) and we've had it several times since. Of course, I veer off slightly from the original recipe, but that's to be expected.
No matter what you do, ground turkey is never an attractive looking thing. It goes from being a strange salmon-y pink color to purple-ish grey. But, I always choose ground turkey over ground beef, but feel free to use the bovine if you'd like. Even ground chicken or tofu would work! You could very easily make this a verde recipe using ground chicken and green enchilada sauce... hum. Maybe I'll just do that next time.
The original recipe of this I found called for a package of taco seasoning. I like to substitute other seasonings to get rid of all that sodium and silica. You can always make your own refried beans, which is my next big endeavor, but make sure you get authentic canned refried beans.
As you can see, I only was able to use about 12 shells. I just kind of eat the other cooked shells (the other 3) and I use the leftover meat for a taco salad later on, but if you have a large pan or if you want leftovers for days, use everything up!
Enchilada sauce comes in 10 ounce cans, which is a bummer cause I want a lot of it, but all you'll need is 2 cans. This stuff really does go a long way.
Don't add the cheese until the last 5 minutes or so or you'll have a whole mess of burnt cheese on top. I used cheddar because that's what we had, but colby or monterrey would work great.
Yes. That is what you want, right there! Please, please, please let this rest for a minute or two because that enchilada sauce is molten lava hot! But you'll love this. Molten lava hot or otherwise.
Enchilada Stuffed Shells
Adapted from the wonderful BlogChef!
15 jumbo pasta shells, cooked according to package
1 lb ground turkey
2 10 oz cans red enchilada sauce
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 cup refried beans
1 cup shredded cheddar, monterrey or colby cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9x9 or 11x11 baking dish with cooking spray. In a large saute pan, cook turkey until no longer pink. Combine turkey with 1 can of enchilada sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, cumin, paprika and refried beans. Stir to combine completely. Stuff each cooked pasta shell with turkey mixture and place into the greased baking dish. Pour remaining can of enchilada sauce over stuffed shells to coat. Cover with aluminum foil and bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and remove foil. Top with cheddar cheese and place back in oven to cook for 5 more minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!