I am a true blue taco lover. I think I have firmly established my devotion to fish tacos with the grilled fish taco and fried fish taco recipes that I’ve posted over the past couple of weeks. But don’t think I’m not equally besotted by tradition beef tacos as well – I am head over heels for them as well. The only, and I mean only, thing that bugs me in the slightest about tacos are the crunchy taco shells that shatter into a billion pieces when you bite into them, sending precious taco filling back on to your plate and/or down your arm. And while soft flour or corn tortillas are one answer to this issue, there’s another solution. Pasta!
Cook yourself up a nice pot of spaghetti or linguine or whatever your pasta preference is. While that is going on, saute some ground beef with a little chili powder and cumin to give it a little sneaky heat, and then stir in some salsa.
After that, it is all about the toppings (or as the Southern husband likes to say, the fixin’s!). I like a little crumbled queso fresco (a mild Mexican cheese that you can usually find right in your supermarket), some chopped avocado, a dollop of sour cream and a squeeze of fresh lime. You could also add shredded cheddar or Jack cheese, chopped scallions, a spoonful of guacamole, some shredded iceburg lettuce, some pico de gallo…whatever floats your boat taco-wise is what should go on top of your taco pasta. You could also put these toppings in little bowls on the table so folks can customize their taco pasta to their heart’s content.
So all you crunchy unreliable taco shells out there? I’m breaking up with YOU this time. Bring on the taco pasta!
- 8 ounces spaghetti or other pasta
- 1/2 bound ground beef
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 12 cups salsa
Toppings (any or all!)
- Sour cream
- Chopped avocado
- Cheese (crumbled queso fresco, shredded cheddar or jack, etc)
- Shredded iceberg lettuce
- Lime wedges
- Pico de gallo
- Chopped scallions or red onions
- Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions and drain.
- While pasta is cooking, make sauce: saute ground beef with chili powder and cumin in a large deep skillet over medium high heat until cooked through, about 5 minutes.
- Add salsa to skillet and stir until mixed in and heated through.
- Add cooked pasta to skillet and toss with tongs until mixed in with sauce.
- Divide among plates and serve with your choice of toppings.