Tex-Mex Mac

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Have you ever wonder what the difference is between Mexican and Tex-Mex or Southwestern food? Well, I have because they seem so similar. But, there are differences.

True Mexican food is very simple and depending on the part of Mexico your talking about varies. For instance, beef isn’t very common in Southern Mexico. Chicken and pork is more common. Enchiladas are more likely to be filled with cheese and covered in a mole sauce or a tomatillo  sauce. Mexican food can be hot, but bland and plain – that almost seems like an oxymoron, doesn’t it?

And, Mexican food full of spices? Not used so very much.

But, cumin, a common spice in Tex-Mex cuisine arrived in the Southwestern region via immigrants from the Canary Islands. As a side bar, cumin is considered to have some medicinal and health benefits: aiding in digestion, improving immunity, asthma, diabetes and other health concerns.

Now, sit down for this one – a German immigrant living in New Braunfels, Texas invented chili powder in 1895! Yes, chili powder is a Texan and an American invention!

So, today’s recipe fuses a little bit from both worlds to make a fast and tasty, one dish meal that is easy to whip up and doesn’t take long to cook. This recipe was inspired by one I saw at Taste of Home, but I knew it had to live up to my Southwestern, native New Mexican cowboy’s taste buds. So, this Southern gal went to work developing something that”tickle his innards” as the old timer use to say. (That means he would really like.)

End result? His two thumbs up award. Consider that like getting the Golden Globe and Emmy around here.

Tex-Mex Mac

1 pound lean ground beef

1 large onion, chopped

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained

1 8 ounce can tomato sauce

1 4 ounce can chopped green chilies

1 cup fresh or frozen corn

1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth (or low sodium beef broth)

1 1/4 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon oregano

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

2/3 cup uncooked elbow macaroni

grated cheddar or grated Mexican blend cheese, for garnish

  1. In a Dutch oven or large skillet brown meat with onion and garlic in a non-stick pan until meat is no longer pink and onions begin to soften. Drain if needed.
  2. Stir in remaining ingredients except macaroni and bring to a boil.
  3. Stir in macaroni and reduce heat. Simmer for 15 – 20 minutes until macaroni is tender.
  4. Garnish with grated cheese.

Enjoy!!

Tex - Mex Mac
Tex – Mex Mac

 

 

 

© 2016 Beverly Hicks Burch

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