Sunday, August 17, 2008

Vegetarian Tostadas

Last month we had a party at our house, where among the many dishes and snacks I served were tostadas. I was pretty surprised at how many of my guests had never before had a tostada. Usually I anticipate many questions when I serve things like tamales, but I never expected confusion over this. I thought tostadas were very common.

They are a very easy party snack. They can be assembled quickly using a variety of toppings. Above I topped them with refried pinto beans, chopped avocado, Salsa Xni Pec, cilantro and cheese (queso fresco).

Above I topped the tostada with refried black beans, tomatillo salsa, cilantro and shredded cheese (queso Chihuahua).

Tostadas can be made at home by either frying corn tortillas in oil or by baking them on an ungreased cookie sheet for a couple of minutes in the oven, until they become stiff. Incidentally, that is how freshly made tortilla chips are made at restaurants, by frying corn tortillas in oil. The only difference is that they cut the tortillas into triangles first. Anyway, for an easy option, the tostadas can also be purchased, as seen below:

Below is another easy thing to do with tostadas. Simply top them with shredded cheese and then melt the cheese either briefly in the oven or in the microwave for about 10 seconds. Where I grew up in Michigan, we called this snack Chips and Cheese. You can do the same thing using tortilla chips instead of tostadas. Pictured below, I also topped it with a bit of picante sauce.

Another variations is to top the tostadas or tortilla chips with beans or other toppings and cheese and then baking them for a few minutes in the oven to melt the cheese. I have heard people refer to that as Nachos or Mexican Pizza. I have found that throughout the US, people call variations of these snacks by all sorts of different names.

5 comments:

Melanie said...

I love tostadas and order them all the time from Mexican restaurants and the "taco truck" (here in Milwaukee there are people who sell tacos and such from trucks parked in parking lots or on the street -- always delicious!) Anyway, I rarely make them at home, probably because the kids prefer quesadillas. My question is: how did you prepare the shells for your party? Did you buy the pre-toasted ones? And, with the pre-toasted kind, do you heat them before serving? Thank you so much for your wonderful blog - I read it all the time. I have been a vegetarian for 15 years and have loved Mexican food for longer than that!

ColorJoy LynnH said...

Yum! Brian and I were just talking of Tomatilla Salsa just a few hours ago. So tasty!

Wish I could figure out a way to make decent tortillas without corn or wheat. I have tried a few times with so-so results, and they are such a hassle!

Lynnie

Kathleen said...

Hi! Thanks for the comments!

Melanie, I am glad you enjoy my blog! I agree that taco trucks can have absoultely great food!

Yes, I used packaged tostadas for my party. No, I did not heat the tostadas. I just simply took the tostadas out of the bag and piled them in a bowl. That was a short-cut I was glad that I took. So, they were eaten at room temperature. I provided many topping choices for make-your-own tostadas. I also explained to people that they could break them into smaller pieces to use for dipping with the salsas.

I was thinking of having make-your-own tacos instead of tostadas, but opted for the tostadas so that I wouldn't have to keep heating tortillas. In the Florida summer heat, the less heating you have to do, the better!!

Kathleen

ORICCHETI said...

Today I made vegetarian tostadas inspired in yours! they look so delicious! I made xni pec, frijoles refritos, and potatoes cut in little cubes with tomato salsa and one pinch of orégano,jitomate salsa and fresh cheese.. mmm mmm
they were a sucseesful!
Thank you for your recipes and your blog!

Kathleen said...

Hola Oriccheti! Estoy muy feliz que las tostadas resultaron tan deliciosas! La papa con el jitomate debe ser muy rico! Me encanta el tipo de oregano de Mexico, pero a veces es dificil encontrar en EEUU.

Hi Oriccheti! I'm very happy your tostadas turned out so delicious! The potato with the jitomate salsa must have been really tasty! I love the type of oregano from Mexico, but sometimes it's hard to find it in the US.