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Black Bean Tostadas

Nava Atlas
A tostada is a crisp tortilla piled generously with any variety of toppings, often including beans, crisp lettuce, and salsa. Good accompaniments include: baked potatoes or sweet potatoes; or fresh corn on the cob. Add a salad and/or a simple steamed veggies, you’ve got an easy weeknight meal or fun quick fare to serve company.
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 8 good-quality corn tortillas
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil or 3 tablespoons vegetable broth or water
  • 1 medium onion or two shallots finely chopped
  • 2 to 4 cloves garlic minced
  • Two 15-to 16-ounce cans black beans drained and rinsed,
or 3 to 3 1/2 cups cooked black beans
  • Juice of 1/2 lime or lemon or more, to taste
  • 1 to 2 small hot green chili peppers seeded and sliced, optional
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

Garnishes:

  • Shredded lettuce baby greens, or baby spinach
  • Plenty of mild medium, or hot chunky salsa, such as chipotle, peach or mango
  • Store-bought or homemade Vegan Sour Cream or Cashew Cream

Instructions
 

  • To toast the torillas in the oven: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Spread the tortillas on a baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, or until crisp and dry and just starting to be touched with golden brown spots. Remove them from the oven and place on a serving platter.
  • To toast the tortillas on a stovetop: Heat a large skillet. Toast the tortillas over medium heat (two or three at a time, depending on the size of the skillet) for about 5 minutes or so on each side, until crisp and touched with golden brown spots. Don’t be afraid to let them get nice and crisp—that’s better than ending up with a soggy tostada.
  • Heat the oil, broth, or water in medium skillet. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until golden, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the remaining ingredients (aside from the garnishes, of course) along with 1/4 cup water and bring to a simmer. Using a potato masher, mash some of the beans so that the liquid becomes thick and saucy.
  • Place the shredded lettuce, sour cream, and salsa in separate serving bowls and let everyone assemble their tostadas as follows: A layer of shredded lettuce; the black bean mixture; salsa; and sour cream. Pick up the tostadas and eat out of hand (with plenty of napkins!).

Notes

Recipe and excerpt from Plant Power: Transform Your Kitchen, Plate, and Life with More Than 150 Fresh and Flavorful Vegan Recipes by Nava Atlas. ©2014, published by HarperOne, reprinted by permission.