THE WASHINGTON POST – I challenged myself this week to make a truly fast, easy, cheap dinner from what I had in my pantry and refrigerator, and I found myself falling back on an old standby from my post-college days: Taquitos.
These little corn tortillas filled and rolled into crispy treats bring back great memories of when dinner was often some sort of easy-to-make, snack food enjoyed with a group of friends. I find taquitos fun to assemble.
The tortillas are rolled around a filling – in this case canned black beans and corn, grated cheese, salsa and dry seasoning – baked until crisp and then served with whatever sides you have on hand: salsa, sour cream, fresh cilantro, diced onions and tomatoes.
You can get fancier by making a more complicated filling with seasoned meats or seafood, and fresh seasonings and spices, such as scallions or peppers.
OVEN-BAKED BLACK BEAN AND CORN TAQUITOS WITH MANGO SALSA
Make Ahead: The filling can be made ahead and refrigerated for about a week. The salsa is best if eaten just after chilling, but can be made up three days ahead.
Storage Notes: The filling can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week. Both can be frozen, separately, for six weeks and three weeks, respectively.
For The Taquitos
Two cups mashed cooked black beans
Half teaspoon chili powder
Half teaspoon cumin
Half teaspoon paprika
Quarter teaspoon salt
Quarter teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Quarter teaspoon onion powder
Quarter teaspoon garlic powder
Quarter teaspoon dried oregano
One-eighth teaspoon cayenne pepper
One cup fresh or canned whole kernel corn
Quarter cup medium salsa
One-and-a-half cups coarsely grated sharp cheddar cheese or crumbled queso fresco
24 corn tortillas
Olive oil or non-stick cooking spray
For The Mango Salsa
Quarter cup minced white onion
One jalapeño pepper, stemmed, seeded and minced (can substitute quarter teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes)
Three tablespoons fresh lime juice
Two tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Quarter teaspoon ground cumin
Quarter teaspoon salt
Quarter teaspoon ground white pepper
One-and-a-half cups mango, chopped
For the taquitos: Position the rack in the middle of oven and preheat to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix together the black beans, chili powder, cumin, paprika, salt, red pepper flakes, onion powder, garlic powder, oregano and cayenne pepper.
Add the corn, salsa and cheese to the bowl and gently mix to combine.
Lay the tortillas on a large, rimmed baking sheet and transfer to the oven for about one minute, to soften.
Remove the baking sheet from the oven and place a clean kitchen towel over the tortillas to keep them warm.
Set a tortilla on your work surface and lay one heaping tablespoon of the black bean mixture in a line across the centre-top. Roll the tortilla tightly around the beans so it is snug in the centre. Lay it seam side down on the baking sheet.
Continue with the remaining tortillas and beans, lining the taquitos up right next to each other to keep them from unfurling.
Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the surface of the taquitos with the oil or lightly coat them with nonstick cooking spray.
Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, until lightly brown and crispy.
For the salsa: While the taquitos are baking, make the salsa. In a medium bowl, combine the onion, jalapeño (or crushed red pepper flakes), lime juice, oil, cumin, salt and pepper until mixed together.
Gently fold in the mangos. Cover and chill before serving.
Serve the taquitos with the mango salsa on the side.