Taco Bites

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      Taco Bites
      1 vine tomato, chopped and drained, about 1/4 to 1/3 cup
      2 tbs onion, diced
      Optional: 1/2 small jalapeño pepper, diced
      1 garlic clove, minced
      1 tsp fresh lime juice
      Salt and pepper
      6 flour tortillas, not burrito-sized
      3 tsp vegetable, canola, or olive oil
      1 lb lean ground beef
      7 to 8-oz can picante sauce, or red salsa
      2 tsp chili powder
      1 tsp ground cumin
      1/4 cup sour cream
      2 tbs fresh cilantro leaves
      Preheat the oven to 350°.
      Make the Pico de Gallo: Combine the tomato, onion, jalapeño, garlic, cilantro, and lime juice.

      Season with salt and pepper and stir.
      Use a 3-inch cookie cutter to cut out 4 small taco shells from each tortilla. Save the scraps and toast them for a crispy garnish for salads or soups. Warm the tortillas for 10 to 20 sec, covered, in a microwave, or wrap in foil and heat in a warm oven until pliable.

      Brush both sides of the each tiny tortilla using 2 tsp of oil and sprinkle with salt, keeping them covered and warm in between. Press into the openings of a mini muffin tin. Repeat with 11 more little tortillas, lightly reheating if needed to keep them pliable.

      Don’t let the tortillas dry out.
      Repeat with a second mini muffin tin or repeat after cooking the first batch of mini taco shells for a total of 24.
      Bake for 10 to 12 min or until lightly browned.
      Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tspof oil followed by the ground beef. Cook, breaking up into small pieces, until no longer pink.

      Use a spoon to scoop out any excess oil.
      Add the picante sauce, chili powder and cumin. Season with salt and pepper and stir. Simmer for about 5 to 10 min, or until the sauce is mixture is no longer watery.

      Taste for seasoning.
      Add a heaping spoonful of the beef mixture to each tortilla shell followed by a dollop of sour cream, a scoop of homemade Pico de Gallo, and a sprig of cilantro. Serve and enjoy! Serves 6-8
      clock smilie

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