Usually I stick as close to the original recipe as possible (swapping in things here in there due to preferences or just not having an ingredient on hand). With this one, I saw so much potential. As an aside, I recently took a "test" called StrengthsFinders and found one of my top strength themes is Maximizer. Essentially someone with this strength likes to take something from good to great. So, my mind went to concocting something grand...
I noticed that this recipe used a pastry puff crust but to me, that didn't feel very Mexican. Valerie at Love Through the Stomach never claimed it was authentic anyway. But then I thought...why not make a cornmeal crust instead? And while we're at it, let's bake it in a tart pan so it looks pretty (and heck, my lovely tart pan deserves to be used more than once since it's arrival at Christmas time!)
Crust figured out. Now for the filling. I'm sure everyone's familiar with 7 Layer Taco Dips. They're cold dips and usually the base layer is refried beans doctored up with taco seasoning and then there are 6 other layers...usually sour cream, guacamole, salsa, shredded cheddar cheese, onions, tomatoes, lettuce, and/or olives are somewhere in that mix. It's really not all that much of a recipe as just layering whatever sounds good. And that's where I drew my inspiration for this filling. Which just by chance happened to be 7 layers once I put them in and counted. Just my luck!
What resulted was something extremely comforting and soooo filling. I quickly realized we could have used some help to finish eating this one because this was one literally heavy pie!
For this week's swap, I submitted Roasted Tomatillo Enchiladas and the swap round-up as always can be found at A Taste of Home Cooking's blog.
7 Layer Taco Pie with Cornmeal Crust
For the Crust
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup cornmeal
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optionally added for a little "kick")
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 Tablespoon sugar
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 pound lean ground turkey or beef
- 1 packet low-sodium taco seasoning
- 4 oz (1/2 package) Neufchatel low-fat cream cheese, softened
- 8 oz reduced fat sour cream
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- lettuce, shredded (in this case I had leftover Cilantro-Jalapeno Slaw so that's what I used today)
- 1 small tomato, diced
- 1/2 small onion, diced
- cheddar cheese, shredded
For the Crust
- Whisk flour, cornmeal, salt, and cayenne pepper in small bowl to blend. Using electric mixer, beat butter and sugar in large bowl to blend. Beat in egg yolks. Add dry ingredients and beat just until blended. Roll dough into a ball then flatten into disk shape. Wrap dough disk in plastic and refrigerate 20 minutes. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Keep refrigerated. Let dough soften slightly at room temperature before using.)
- Preheat oven to 375F. Lightly grease a 9" diameter tart pan with removeable bottom (if you don't have one, a springform pan or pie dish will also do). Unwrap dough disk; press onto bottom and up sides of tart pan. Blind bake for 15-20 minutes, until crust is lightly golden brown. Set aside to cool.
- While the crust is cooling, brown the ground turkey or beef. Drain fat and add taco seasoning, preparing per package directions. Cover and set aside.
- Combine cream cheese and sour cream in a bowl. Spread an even layer into the bottom of the cooled pie tart. Add a layer of browned beef followed by black beans. Continue layering rest of ingredients. Serve by cutting into slices and enjoy!