Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Taco Tuesday: Tostadas!

When Z and I started dating, we used to affectionately call Tuesdays "Taco Tuesday" and celebrate by venturing to one of our favorite Mexican restaurants and enjoying some of our most loved Mexican dishes.  I don't know what it is about me and Mexican food lately, but I'm loving as much as I can get of it.  This week, I made ground beef tostadas.  So simple, quite fast, and SO YUM! 

photo: my own

Tostada, deconstructed:
flat corn tortilla (mist 12 corn tortillas with corn oil and place directly on center oven rack.  Broil in oven on low until very lightly browned and crisp.  Turn over in oven once)
Favorite brand of refried beans (I LOVE La Costena)
favorite picadillo recipe*
chopped onions (about 1 cup is enough for this recipe of 12 tostadas)
chopped tomato (about 1/2 cup - I add less tomatoes than onions on my tostadas because the salsa and picadillo also contain tomatoes)
favorite guacamole recipe*
favorite salsa recipe*
shredded Mexican blend cheese

sour cream, Mexican crema or plain Greek yogurt (optional)
* Ingredients and recipes follow

For the picadillo:
I use a different variation of a family recipe every time and don't always pay attention to what goes in it, but Rachael Ray has one that is very similar to what I did for this.  Makes 12 tostada servings.  You will need:

1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground beef
1/4 cup stuffed pimento olives, chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Crushed red pepper flakes
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

In a large skillet over medium heat, saute onions, garlic, and pepper in olive oil until softened, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add ground beef and olives and continue stirring to break up and brown the meat. Season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. When beef has browned, add tomato sauce gradually while stirring. Cook 1 to 2 minutes longer to incorporate sauce.  Source here

For the guacamole:

3 Haas avocados, halved, seeded and peeled
1 lime, juiced
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon cayenne
½ medium red onion, diced
½ jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
½ cup chopped cilantro leaves, packed
¼ tsp garlic powder

In a large bowl place the scooped avocado pulp and lime juice, toss to coat. Drain, and reserve the lime juice, after all of the avocados have been coated. Using a potato masher add the salt, cumin, and cayenne and mash. Then, fold in the onions, jalapeno, cilantro, and garlic. Add 1 tablespoon of the reserved lime juice. Let sit at room temperature for 1 hour and then serve. Makes about 2.5 cups Source (modified) here

For the salsa:
1 can whole tomatoes, peeled
1 cup packed cilantro leaves
1/2 medium red onion, coarsely chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, stemmed, seeded and sliced
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 teaspoons olive oil 
pinch of cumin seed
Kosher salt and pepper to taste

Dump all ingredients into food processor and pulse until contents are liquified.  Makes about 4 cups.  Recipe: my own

Meatless - omit picadillo
Chicken - replace picadillo with pulled chicken

Enjoy with your favorite dry Rose or oaked Chardonnay


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