Sam’s Crispy Black Bean Tostadas

When Sam was born, she wouldn’t sleep anywhere but in our bed on Angie’s chest for at least two months.  We’d both lay there, waiting…waiting…waiting, until finally her little eyes would close, her tongue tip would stick out of her mouth just a little bit and she’d finally be sound asleep.  Then, we’d attempt “the transfer”.  Angie would move ever… so…. slowly…, sliding her legs off of the side of the bed, keeping her back parallel to the floor like she was in a limbo contest to keep Sam flat, asleep and unsuspicious.  And just when she’d start to move towards the other room where the dusty, neglected crib sat in mockery of her painstaking efforts to spend one night in sound sleep, Sam would fuss and cry until she ultimately ended up back in our bed, on Angie’s chest, sleeping with her little tongue out.  Eventually, and with a lot of resistance, we stuck her in her crib one night and listened to her wail herself to sleep while we both lay there feeling like the worst parents that ever were.  It worked really well though.  Now, when Sam’s here, it’s all I can do to get her out of bed if she’s got a day off.  Irony.  But none of that covers her good qualities.  She’s turned into an amazing woman, regardless of the fact that she cusses like a sailor (and actually has an anchor tattooed on her forearm).  In fact, she takes over the kitchen every now and then and makes us dinner.  To me, that alone makes all the sleepless nights that Angie went through well worth it.  Mainly because they were Angie’s sleepless nights and not so much mine. This incredible crispy black bean tostada recipe is something Sam brought home from her boyfriend’s mom.  It’s easy to make, vegetarian, nutritious and tastes fantastic.  If you’re the guy that just has to take the photos while she’s cooking, it’s also super fun.  This one made it into our regular rotation of dinners after the first bite.  Try it in your kitchen and enjoy.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (f)/180 degrees (c).  Yields: 12 tostadas-enough to serve 5-6 adults. Time:  15 minutes to prep, 25 minutes to bake.  Total: 30 minutes

Soundtrack:  The Style Council-The Singular Adventures of The Style Council.  Not my usual 80’s type of 80’s band but these guys were smooth and a little Motown-ish.  Listen to My Ever Changing Moods and tell me you don’t feel like snapping your fingers with a nice, mod sweater on.

Ingredients:
12-10 inch corn tortillas
2-8 oz cans of organic black bean, washed and drained.
16 oz block, mild cheddar, grated medium course
2 avocados, mashed
2 Cups shredded green leaf lettuce
2 medium tomatoes, diced
Our homemade fresh, lime and cilatro salsa recipe

Directions:
On a baking sheet lined with tin foil, place the tortillas in the oven for 10 minutes to crispen them. Remove and let cool enough that they can be handled.  Top with black beans and grated cheddar cheese each.  Let bake for 15 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are crisp enough to be picked up without folding.  Top with mashed avocado, shredded leaf lettuce, tomatoes and salsa.  Serve.

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