Lately I’ve been spending quite a lot of time reading novels. I love getting completely lost in another world, and I tend to step out of my own reality easily. Though enjoyable, I often experience the emotions of the characters more strongly than is probably healthy. I remember back in middle school and early high school I would read close to 50 books in a summer. My mom would find me in the exact same spot on the couch reading nearly every night when she came home from work. The rigors of college drastically reduced my reading time, and the same is occurring in gradate school. After spending the bulk of the day reading textbooks and notes on my computer, the last thing my swimming eyes want to do is read. I’m trying to take full advantage of the summer break and pack in as much reading as possible. I’m headed to the library this morning to pick up a few books for our vacation to Hawaii, which by the way we leave for tomorrow!!! As per usual, I have procrastinated and am way behind on packing. It will be a late night tonight, but I sleep easily on planes and cannot be more excited for our trip!
These tacos have been in our dinner rotation for a few years now. They are easy to make and are a tasty vegetarian meal. We tend to go meatless a couple nights a week, and I don’t miss it one bit when we make these tacos. The flavors of the filling are in perfect proportion, and the crispy exterior makes them that much better.
2 cups cooked black beans
⅓ cup minced onion
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. paprika
¼ tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
4-6 oz. Monterey or pepper jack cheese, grated
8 corn tortillas
1. In a medium bowl, combine beans, onion, cilantro, and spices. Lightly mash all of the ingredients together.
2. In a large skillet, add a couple tablespoons of olive oil and heat over medium-high heat.
3. Add one corn tortilla to the skillet at a time, letting each get hot in the oil for a few seconds. Add about ¼ cup of the bean filling to one half of the tortilla. Top with a sprinkle of grated cheese.
4. Using a spatula, carefully fold the tortilla over so it forms a shell. Press down lightly on the tortilla so it holds its shape.
5. As the first taco cooks, move it to the side start the next one.
6. Cook each taco for about 2-3 minutes per side until they are nicely browned and crispy. Additional oil may need to be added after every couple tacos.
7. When flipping the taco to cook on the other side, use a spatula and flip the taco toward the fold so the filling doesn’t fall out.
8. Serve tacos with toppings like hot sauce, salsa, avocados, and sour cream.
Note: The tacos are best fresh. Reheating softens them, even if done in a skillet.
Yield: 8 tacos
(Recipe from Cornerstone Cooking via Endless Simmer)