Thursday, July 19, 2018

Rosie's Go-To Dish - Corn/Bean Tortilla Pie.

 Everybody that cooks has a go-to dish.
It's that dish you rely on - the old stand-by.
It's the one where, if you're going to a picnic, a potluck,
 a block party, or whatever,
the other people there expect you to bring.
It's the one where, if it's not in your hands when you get there,
you will be turned away and told not to bother,
even if you're hosting the party.

I'm giving you that dish.

It's simple.
It's easy.
It's quick.
It's versatile.
It's inexpensive. 
It's basic.
And, bottom line, it's just plain good.
It has all the qualities of a go-to dish.

Drum roll, please...
It's Rosie's corn/bean tortilla pie!


There is no "recipe."
Just build it and they will come.

Here are the building blocks:
1 package flour tortillas (large or small, depends on you)
black beans
assorted cheeses (cheddar, mozzarella, Monterey Jack), grated
2-3 TB unsalted butter, melted
red pepper flakes or cayenne

And that's it.

Now, as I said, it's versatile.
You can add ingredients if you like.
Possible additions:
sliced olives 
chopped onions
chopped peppers (Go for the colors!)
sliced jalapeños
sliced tomatoes (peeled, seeded, juiced)
I'm sure you can think of more, but I'm just giving you enough to get started.

 Now, about the beans and corn.  I don't like canned beans, but I won't stop you from making this with canned beans.  Just be sure to wash the slime off and drain them well.  Hmmmm...  What?  Don't care for canned beans now?

For the black beans, you may or may not soak them overnight.  I rarely soak and they come out just fine.  I simply bring to a boil, then simmer them until just tender, refreshing the water once.  Then drain and let drip dry.  And I like my beans al dente - just tender, not mushy, but that's me.
As for the corn, you may use canned corn, but fresh kernels sliced right off the cob and sautéed in a little butter with a bare sprinkle of sugar (for caramelization) and some salt would be just fine with me.

That said, here's what you do:

1)  Get you a stack of tortillas. (Depending on the thickness of the filling, count on 7-10 tortillas.)
2)  In a medium bowl, combine a can of drained corn and an equal amount of cooked black beans.
If you want to add in any extras here, go right ahead.  Sliced black olives, chopped multicolored peppers, minced jalapeños, and chopped onions work for me.
3)  Grate a bunch of cheeses.  I use cheddar, mozzarella, and Monterey Jack.  About 2 loose cups each, but you can never have too much cheese.
4)  Start layering - tortilla, cheese, corn/bean mixture, more cheese, repeat.  Continue layering until you use up all ingredients, saving a little mixture and cheeses for the top.  See *Rosie Tip to follow.
5)  Brush the outside edges of each tortilla with melted unsalted butter and dust edges with cumin and pepper flakes.
6)  Brush top tortilla with butter and sprinkle with a few tablespoons of the corn/bean mixture and some cheeses.  Give it a sprinkling of the cumin and pepper flakes (or cayenne).
7)  Bake in a 325° oven for about 40 - 45 minutes, until heated through and top and edges are lightly browned.  Tent with foil to prevent over-browning, if necessary.  Remove from oven, let sit about 7 minutes, then slice into wedges.  Serve with sour cream, salsa, and cilantro, if desired.

*Rosie Construction Tip:  On each tortilla layer, I spread out the cheese first, then the corn/bean mixture, then some more cheese for the glue.  It works better if you build up the cheese a bit around the edges.  If you spread it evenly, then the entire stack will end up like a dome when it bakes.  Building up around the edges gives you a more even, straighter stack.

Oh my!

Now, if you have a go-to dish, I'd love to hear about it.
E-me at
And thanks!


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