Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Eggplant, Black Bean and Cotija Tostada with Spicy Tomatillo Jalapeno Salsa

We don't do much southwestern cooking at home, so my image of tostados is from Taco Bell commercials.   I pictured a crunchy, deep-fried shell with little taste, but our tostados were soft and golden brown with lots of fresh corn flavor.  The trick is to gently fry the tortillas just before assembling your tostadas.  The Spicy tomatillo jalapeno salsa can be made ahead of time, so just pick your fresh eggplant and tomatoes and dinner will be ready in no time.  We used Cloud Nine and Thai Hybrid Tiger eggplants, Matt's Wild Cherry tomatoes and cilantro from the garden. I wish we had an avocado tree, but for now the avocados are store-bought.

Eggplant, Black Bean and Cotija Tostados with Spicy Tomatillo Jalapeno Salsa 
(makes enough for 4-6 depending on how much you load the tostadas)


2                 garlic cloves, chopped
1/4    cup     cilantro (or what you pick from the garden), chopped
2       cans    black beans (30 oz total), drained and rinsed
3/4    tsp      salt
1       lb       eggplant, sliced thinly
2                 avocado, chopped
1       pkg    corn tortillas
1       cup     cotija cheese, grated
1       cup     cherry tomatoes
                   Spicy Tomatillo Jalapeno Salsa
                   vegetable oil, olive oil

  1. Combine beans with 2 cups water and bring to a simmer uncovered.  Cook about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Drain beans but RESERVE LIQUID.  
  2. Puree beans, 1/4 cup of cooking liquid, and garlic until smooth
  3. Heat some olive oil in a pan over medium heat and fry eggplant until golden brown.  Flip and repeat.  Remove from pan to paper towels to dry.
  4. Heat 3 Tbs vegetable oil over moderate heat, then add beans and cook until very thick, about 5 minutes.  Add salt and remove from stove.  You may have extra beans (we did).  If so, refrigerate and use later.  If beans get too thick to spread, just add some more of the reserved cooking liquid.
  5. Heat tortillas in vegetable oil over moderate heat until golden brown.  Flip over and repeat.
  6. Assemble tostadas:  spread beans over bottom, then salsa, then eggplant slices, avocado, and tomatoes.  Top with cheese and sprinkle with cilantro.



  1. I love, love, love cotija cheese! Mmm, wouldn't an avocado tree be a wonderful thing?

  2. What a great way to use eggplant! My family would really enjoy the combination of flavors you used here.

  3. Oh FINALLY! You've been teasing us with this recipe and you finally posted :)

    And in reference to Tasty Trix's comment, my next door neighbor in LA had a HUGE avocado tree that was over-proliferated and she would come knocking on our door begging us to relieve her of all the excess harvest. Oh the good ole days...I haven't seen an avocado tree since I moved to the east coast :(

  4. Yes! Any recipe with eggplant and avocado gets my vote! 2 great ingredients that are rarely seen together!

    Peas Love Carrots

  5. This looks amazing! I've never used eggplant in a Mexican dish before, but now I can't wait to:))

  6. This looks like a great recipe. My hubby likes them alot so I would definitely try this new recipe! Thanks!

  7. This tostada looks absolutely delicious! I love the addition of cotija cheese here!

  8. This is so pretty! And sounds wonderful.


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