I love making tostadas because I can easily please everyone in our family. The kids prefer them without onions and salsa, my husband and father like them with the works, and I eat them without the meat. I was able to make 15 of these for about $7.00. Not to shabby for feeding a family of six. I was very excited to use fresh butter-crisp lettuce and green onion chives from my garden.
Here is the very simple recipe:
White corn tortillas
Oil for frying
Spices (garlic, paprika, onion powder, chili powder, cayenne pepper, black pepper, and salt.)
Sharp cheddar cheese (shreds)
Lettuce, tomatoes, onions
Garden fresh salsa
Sour cream, black olives, or avocado (optional)
Heat oil in skillet until sizzling hot, but not smoking. Fry corn tortillas until crisp. (about 45 seconds per side.) Place on sheet pan. Brown meat and add spices to taste. Drain fat. Spread refried beans in a nice thick layer on each tortilla. Add meat and top with cheese. Bake in 350 degree preheated oven for about 10 minutes. Remove and top with whatever suits your fancy!
A few words about tostadas.
Tostada is a Spanish word which literally means “toasted”. When tortillas are no longer considered fresh enough to roll, but still good enough to eat, they are deep fried to make them crispy. According to the Mexican National Institute of Anthropology and History,
Tortillas are thought to have been served up 2000 years ago! The traditional tortilla has been made of maize (corn) since pre-Columbian times, and involves curing the maize in lime water then grinding and cooking it, kneading it into a dough, pressing it flat into thin patties, and cooking it on a very hot griddle of sorts.
Mexican tostadas are usually made with pork instead of beef and generally contain spicy chili peppers.