A great meal, super inexpensive, vegan, Lenten ready. Bookmark this page, you'll enjoy this.
Starting with the refried beans recipe, you will create a corn masa mix that you toast on the stove to eat.
Salsa is just as easy and can be as spicy (or not) as you like.
This photo was taken for the refried beans and gorditas combo. These are the basics for a great meal. The bag in the background is Maseca corn masa. "Arbol sin pata: just means Chile de Arbol without the stem. The can of Pinto Beans is because sometimes that's just what you have to do in a time pinch.
Sometimes, I make a big batch of pinto beans and freeze them into two cup servings. Two cups plus a little water will fill a pint size ziplock and will keep nicely and feed my family of five. Plus you know how much salt went into them and you can buy dry organic beans and be economical that way, too. Organic food just seems to taste better, but I'm not going to get hung up on that. There are plenty of people who don't have anything to eat. (You can offer up a prayer for them right now, since you are thinking of them, while you're at it, one for me, too.)
The ratio of water to masa is just about one cup water to one cup masa. Humidity/dryness of your kitchen plays a part. I make gorditas for a family, so I make about 4 cups and vary the sizes of the gorditas.
Mix the water into the masa by hand. Consistency will be moist enough that when forming a ball it will not crack all the time. It should be easy to pat into flat disks.
Here is the masa and water combo, ready to stir.
Get in there, get your hands dirty. It's comfort food, you know. Comfortable to kneed. (Rings off, first. Don't need to eat a diamond later, or clean it for that matter.) Work the water through the whole thing. Add more masa or water as needed.
Ok, here is the size of a ball of dough.
Lovely dirty hand. Serving my family. It's what I do.
Start patting it down. Pat, pat, pat.
See the edges? No cracks. This dough is just right.
This dough is a bit too dry. Cracks will happen, but this needs a bit of water. It really will make the job go easier.
You can see the difference in texture and color. I have flipped the top two gorditas. They have started to brown nicely. They will tell you they are done by inflating slightly. If you have ever pressed into a cake, it bounces back a bit. So does banana bread. It will feel like that. The more you make these, you will know what I mean when I say you know that they are done.
This is prefection. These gorditas don't lie.
Since I'm going to make a salsa, I'm toasting the tomato. If I had a gas stove, I'd be putting this tomato right over the flame. It would hiss and smell good. But since I don't have a gas stove...sigh... I'm using the pan. Works well enough.
Oh, now, we all make mistakes. This one sat a bit too long. It's still edible, just pick off the black stuff. Not as pretty, but you're going to load the top, anyway.
Pinch! Make those flat disks into small bowls. They are going to be hot to the touch, so be careful! The hot masa underneath will stick to your fingers, and it will burn. Not that I know, or anything. No. No, no.
See the pinchmarks? Also note that they are perspiring. The plate is becoming slightly damp. If you like, put a napkin under them to absorb that. It's all good.
Pinching. Ok, this is hot, my fingers are turning red.
Loading with beans. Ok, see the semi burnt one? Yes, the one on the right in this semi blurry picture. I have removed the carbonized bits, for the most part.
Oh, this is another way to eat it. Butter and salt. My dear husband's favorite.
Holy homemade guacamole! This is soooooo good.
Here is that yummy toasted tomato salsa. Another time, another post.
My happy photographer, who enjoyed her gorditas immensely.
Labels: Beans, Chile de arbol, Lenten, Vegan, Vegetarian