Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Black Bean Tortilla Lasagna

We love lasagna and Latin-inspired food at our house. This Black Bean Tortilla Lasagna is a fun vegetarian take on our usual tacos or Italian fare.

This recipe is a spin-off of the Layered Tortilla Tart from one of my favorite cookbooks, America's Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook. When I went to make the meal, I realized I didn't have several of the ingredients, so I improvised with what I had on hand.

The results were quite yummy. I see lots of versatility in this recipe, such as using pinto beans instead of black beans, or subbing out a can of beans for a can of corn. I hope some of you will experiment and tell us how you finesse this dinner in your own happy kitchens.

Mangia! Mangia!

Black Bean Tortilla Lasagna

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 small bell pepper (red, green, orange or yellow), chopped
2 15 ounce cans of low sodium black beans, rinsed and drained
2 teaspoons lime juice
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
3/4 cup low-sodium vegetable broth (omnivores can sub chicken broth)
4 10-inch whole wheat flour tortillas
3 plum tomatoes, cored, chopped and divided
1 bunch green onions, sliced and divided
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped and divided
1 1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
Sliced black olives, guacamole for garnish

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with foil or parchment paper.

Heat oil in a large skillet. Add onion and bell pepper and cook until pepper is softened, stirring often. This will take about 6 to 8 minutes.

Add black beans, lime juice, cumin, chili powder and chicken broth to pan. Stir to combine and heat through. As the broth absorbs, mash some of the beans so that they break apart and form a paste. Remove from heat and set aside.

Place tortillas in the oven two at a time, directly on a middle rack. Cook just 2 or 3 minutes, until slightly browned and crisp around the edges (The tortillas may puff up. This is OK as they will deflate.) Remove from oven and set aside.

Now you are ready for assembly. Place one tortilla in center of lined cookie sheet. Spread one-third of the bean mixture onto the tortilla. Top with one-fourth of the green onions, tomatoes, cilantro and 1/4 cup shredded cheese.

Repeat two more times, ending with the fourth tortilla. Sprinkle remaining tomato, cilantro, green onion and cheese on top. Bake for about 20 minutes, until cheese is melted.

Remove from oven and let rest about 5 minutes. Slice and serve garnished with black olives, guacamole and additional cilantro.

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