If you’re a mom, you know that sometimes making a meal a hit is all in the presentation.
Presentation, if you’re cooking for adults, means making a meal pretty on a plate.
Good presentation, for a kid, means presenting a recipe in a way that either camouflages what it is, or presents it in a way that’s acceptable to the child in question.
My daughter swears she doesn’t like tacos. (I know. It’s odd. I don’t understand it—she eats spinach and broccoli happily. No tacos?) But she does like the taco bake casserole.
“Is there sour cream in it?” she asks suspiciously.
“Why no! No, there isn’t.”
“What’s that white stuff?”
“Melted cheese, sweetie. It’s melted cheese. White cheddar. Yes.”
I know, of course, that it’s horrible to intentionally mislead your child. Especially a sweet-faced nine year old. But I have forgiven my mother for perpetrating the same indiscretion in the 1970s…involving, in my case, mushrooms. I’m a proud fan of mushrooms now and I owe it all to Mama.
I like the black beans and corn in this recipe. There’s a good deal of shredded cheese on the top, but you could use less and use a low-fat sour cream and feel pretty good about yourself, I think. I used ready-made taco seasoning, but you could make your own if you have a little more time.
Tasty Taco Bake
1 pound ground beef
1 onion, chopped
1 clove minced garlic
1 1/2 cups salsa
1 can black beans , drained
1 can corn
small bag of tortilla chips
2 T taco seasoning
2 medium sized flour tortillas
1 cup sour cream (I used light)
2 cups shredded cheese (I like a Monterrey Jack blend)
Press flour tortilla shells into the bottom of a greased, large Pyrex dish. Spoon the meat and salsa mixture over the tortillas. Top with sour cream, then a layer of cheese. Crumble tortilla chips over the top of the casserole and cook at 350 for 20 minutes, covered. Remove foil and cook an additional 5-10 minutes.
Sometimes when I cook it, the consistency is a little soupy when I take it from the oven, but it firms more as it cools a little. It’s a hit at our house, even with taco-haters. :)
Delicious and Suspicious (July 6 2010) Riley Adams
Pretty is as Pretty Dies –Elizabeth Spann Craig