: http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/taco-tartlets-appetizer#ixzz3QRHvBfsb I do not own this recipe book (I looked) and I am sure it was published in one of those ground beef recipe contests (do you remember their recipe contests for each issue?)
I bet I have been making these since at least 1993. Ground beef would go on sale for less than a dollar a pound (I remember when it was 99 cents a pound in the "family packs". I had 5 teenagers, load me up with "family packs"). This weekend, which just happens to be Super Bowl weekend, ground beef was on sale for $2.88 a pound at our local grocery. Thank goodness there were no limits.
Since the recipe on the Taste of Home website has no photos (what???) and since I have tweaked it over the years (or made it easier for the lazy cook) - I thought I would share how I make what we call Taco Tarts.
First I will share my philosophy on appetizers and large families. Recipes like this, which must be made in LARGE quantity are best either broken into a few days or, if you are lucky to have children to press into service, assembly line produced for faster results.
Second, the original recipe states that it makes 24 appetizers which serves 8 people. This is crazy talk! My family eats at least 12 each. That means the original recipe serves 2 members of the Merry family!
Third, the recipe can be time consuming, so why not just make more for later?
So - instead of 1 pound of ground beef, I started with 6 pounds of ground beef. Instead of 2 tablespoons of water, I used 12 tablespoons of water (or a little more) and, instead of measuring 2 tablespoons of taco seasoning, I used 2 envelopes full. And you could use even more for more taco flavor. Unless you make or purchase taco seasoning in a jar - just use envelope contents. Mush together with your fingers until well mixed.
The original recipe adds 1 cup of shredded cheese to the ground beef. I add it to the filling.
Now - just fill them! I use an iced tea spoon. No particular reason. This could be a job for another child or willing participant.
Use a spoon (here I use a soup spoon, no particular reason) and remove each tart and place on a prepared area lined with paper towels. This will help drain the grease from the tart.
You will be left with a mini muffin tin full of grease. Ick. Drain and then grab paper towels. I wipe off top of tin then ball up the towels and wipe out each cubby hole. This will use 3-4 paper towels for each tin full.
If you are a fancy pants, you can dab some more salsa on each tart, dab some sour cream, top with shredded cheese or a slice of black olive, whatever fancy strikes you! If you are making 240 of them like I did - they are just fine as is!
Miss Merry's Taco Tarts
6 lbs. ground beef
12 tablespoons water
2-3 envelopes of taco seasoning
6 cups sour cream
2 cups shredded cheese
3 cans black olives, drained and chopped
1 large bag tortilla chips, crushed
2 jars of salsa
1 roll of paper towels
2 giant bowls
Mini muffin pan(s)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place one tablespoon of meat mixture in cups of mini muffin pan, press to cover bottom and sides. Put one teaspoon (or so) of cream mixture in each cup.
Bake at 375 degrees for 7-8 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
Store in refrigerator in container lined with paper towels. Reheat in microwave on paper towels.
Makes 240 tarts which serves 20 people at my house. (regular serving size is supposed to be 3)