Monday, November 8, 2010

The Kids Cook Monday: Pumpkin Tostadas with Black Beans

The kids did help make this Kids Cook Monday recipe -- but they didn’t eat much of it. They suspiciously eyed the bowl of pumpkin salsa and beans, and all but one bypassed it completely in favor of plain cheese-topped tostadas, one adorned with a pumpkin-seed happy face.

Yet the adults liked it, it was easy, and I know that somewhere out there is a child who likes salsa. So I’m sharing it with you today.

I threw this together for an after school snack during a hectic week. I really worked hard on it: I opened two cans, one jar, and a bag of shredded cheese. Feel free to roast a pumpkin yourself, chop up fresh salsa, cook the beans from scratch, and make your own tortillas. I’ll watch from here.

Oh, I confess: I offered raw pepitas and fried some sage leaves to fancy it up. I couldn’t keep it that simple.

Pumpkin Tostadas with Black Beans

This is an easy way to use up leftover bits of canned pumpkin. It makes enough to serve 8, with some leftover salsa.

8 tortillas, whole-wheat or corn
olive or canola oil
1/2 cup salsa (I used Trader Joe's Double Roasted Salsa)
1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
shredded Mexican cheese blend
raw pepitas (optional)
fried sage leaves (optional; see recipe below)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Brush both sides of tortillas with oil (or spray well with oil) and arrange in a single layer on baking sheets. Bake for 5 minutes, then turn tortillas over and bake another 3-7 minutes or until crispy. Remove from oven and let cool.

In a large bowl, have kids combine salsa and pumpkin puree, stirring until blended. Set out the pumpkin salsa, the beans, cheese, pepitas and sage.

Set a crisped tortilla before each child. With a spoon, they can spread salsa over the tortilla, then help themselves to whatever other toppings they want.

Return the topped tortillas to the oven and bake until the cheese melts.

Fried Sage Leaves

fresh whole sage leaves
olive oil

Wash sage leaves and dry well, blotting with a paper towel. Heat olive oil in a small skillet. Drop a few sage leaves in at a time and watch them carefully: They should turn a deep pine green and crisp in under 30 seconds. Don’t let them brown! Remove them with tongs and set on a plate lined with paper towels to drain and cool. Sprinkle with salt to taste.

Save the leftover sage-infused olive oil for cooking or dressings.


Anonymous said...

This is a bit similar to a quick dinner that I make. I haven't used canned or pureed pumpkin before though and don't usually add conventional tomato salsa. My version normally uses left over roasted pumpkin or sweet potatoes, jalapeno, black beans, scallions and corn. Sometime it winds up as a burrito, sometimes a tostada, sometimes just on a plate as is.

And FWIW, my 7 year old LOVES it.

Darienne said...

That sounds fantastic! I've tried adding mashed-up leftover squash or pumpkin to quesadillas and my kids act like I'm trying to poison them. They do like sweet potato, so I'm going to try a jalapeno-less version of your quick dish next time we have leftovers.


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