Beef and Bean Enchilada Casserole Dinner

Ingredients:

For beans:

1 1/2 cups dried pinto beans (soaked overnight)

1/2 onion

1 clove garlic (on a toothpick)

1/2 tsp ground cumin

salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1/2 tsp sugar

small piece salt pork

6 cups water for cooking

For rice:

3 TBSP lard

1 1/4 cups uncooked white rice (not instant)

1 small onion, minced

1/4 tsp ground cumin

1/4 tsp garlic powder

salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

3 cups chicken broth or you can use chicken bouillon (I use Better than Bouillon)

For casserole:

1/2 pound lean ground beef
1/2 onion, chopped
1 tsp minced garlic

1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1  4-ounce can diced green chiles
Dozen 6-inch corn tortillas
2 cups enchilada sauce (or make your own)

1 small can chopped black olives

1 cup chopped green onions

1 1/2 to 2 cups shredded four cheese Mexican blend

Optional: shredded lettuce, sour cream

Cook beans first. Then do the casserole. You can make the rice while the casserole is baking.
Directions:

Beans:

Soak beans overnight. Drain. Cook in 6 cups of water with all ingredients listed for beans for two hours. Remove onion, garlic and salt pork and discard. Drain beans.

Casserole:

In a large skillet, cook the ground beef, garlic and onion together over medium heat until the beef is browned and the onion is tender. Drain any fat, if needed. Stir in the chili powder, cumin, beans, and chiles; set aside.

Spray a 9×13-inch pan nonstick spray.

Cut the tortillas as follows: cut two into quarters, cut six into halves. Lightly fry the quarters, halves and four whole tortillas for about 30 seconds each until they are just slightly limp but not crisp.

Place half of the tortillas in the bottom of the prepared dish, placing the 4 points of the quarters in the corners, one half between corners on each end and two halves between corners along each side and two wholes in the middle. Top with half of the meat mixture, drizzle 1 cup or half of a can of the enchilada sauce, sprinkle with half the green onions, half the black olives and half the cheese. Repeat the layers one more time. At this point, you can cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate up to 24 hours before baking.

To bake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Remove plastic wrap, cover with foil and bake for 30-40 minutes. Uncover, and bake 5 minutes or so more, until the cheese is nice and bubbly.

Serve on bed of shredded lettuce with a side of rice. Sour cream optional.

Rice:

Heat the lard in a skillet, add rice, onion and spices. Stir. When the onion has become transparent add the broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover with the lid tilted so steam can escape. Simmer for 20 min and do not stir. If all liquid has been absorbed.

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