Healthy Tostadas

This Tostada recipe may not be very authentic, but it is healthier than the traditional recipe calling for lard to make the refried beans.  You can use bacon fat to add flavor to the beans, but olive oil, especially if it has been flavored with herbs, makes a very nice substitution.  The beans gain a lot of flavor from the onions as well, and you can lower the cholesterol in the dish with this substitution.
Mexican Tostada
Chipotles in Adobo Sauce More shoppers are able to find chipotlés in adobo sauce in their regular supermarkets these days, so add a smokey flavor to your salsa by chopping a few chipotlé peppers for your sauce.  You may also be able to find chipotlé sauce or chipotlé powder in your usual stores.  If you prefer a mild or medium spiciness in your cuisine, remove the seeds from the chipotlés when you dice them.  You can use these seeds in your next batch of bird suet. Feel free to add other fresh chilis as well.

If you prefer to use a commercial or pre-prepared salsa instead of this sauce, try our earlier Tostadas recipe.

Refried Beans

1 lb. kidney beans, cooked

1 medium sweet onion

2 tbls olive oil

1 tbls butter, optional

1 tsp sea salt

2 tsp ground pepper

Tomato Sauce

1 lb lean ground beef

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 medium onion, diced

1 bell pepper, diced

2-3 tbls cumin powder

3 chipotlé peppers, finely diced

4 tbls adobo sauce

1 28 oz. tin tomatoes

1 small tin of tomato paste

1 lime, juice of

1 tsp salt

1 tsp ground pepper

Corn Tortillas

3 cups corn flour

1 tsp salt

1 cup warm water

1-2 cups shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese


1 head shredded iceberg lettuce or other greens

In a large saucepan, heat oil on medium and sauté onion, then garlic for a few minutes.  Add the diced pepper and then the cumin.  Add the ground beef and brown completely before adding the chipotlés, adobo, and tomatoes.  Stir, breaking up the tomatoes into chunks. Thicken if necessary with tomato paste.  Add salt and pepper.  Simmer, stirring occasionally, for about an hour.
Refried Beans In a smaller saucepan, sauté the onion for the refried beans in oil until transparent, then mash together with the cooked beans and seasonings until a paste consistency is reached.  Keep warm until needed.

Preheat an oiled griddle to medium heat.  Mix corn flour with salt and add just enough warm water to form a ball.  Pat a lump of dough in the palm of your hand to form a round disk with smooth edges.  Place on griddle and flatten with a large spatula. Cook on the griddle for a few minutes, until edges begin to dry out.  Flip and cook for a few more minutes until both sides are smooth and golden.

Corn Flour Tortillas

Place the tortillas on plates and spread a layer of refried beans on each one.  Top the beans with a layer of hot sauce and sprinkle grated cheese over, then cover with shredded lettuce.  Use plenty of lettuce to cover and spill over onto the plate.


Serve with cold beer.


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