Embrace the ugly: Mexican lasagna

7 Feb

It’s been a bit dull in the meal-planning department here recently, but I wanted to share a delicious recipe that has quickly become part of our tasty-quick-and-ugly repertoire: Mexican Lasagna.

Yep, looks vommy, but tastes yummy. I promise. Pictured above is a slice of my vegan, cheese-free serving. You can also add the shredded stuff, which is how Mr. X likes it:

Ever-so-slightly more photogenic.

So here’s how you make it:

Mexican Lasagna

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, de-stemmed, seeded, de-veined, and chopped
  • 1 container mushrooms, chopped
  • 10 corn tortillas
  • 1 14 oz can vegetarian refried beans or 1 can black or pinto beans, drained and mashed
  • 1 4 oz can diced green chiles
  • 1 jar salsa of choice (less watery is better)
  • 1 cup shredded cheese OR 1/4 to 1/2 cup nutritional yeast (optional)

Preheat oven to 375° F. Heat the oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the bell pepper and cook until it softens to desired consistency, about 5 minutes. Then add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, for another minute or two, until they reduce. If your veggies are taking too long to soften, you can add a pinch of salt to draw out the liquid. Turn off heat and set aside.

In a 9×13 baking dish, lay out your bottom layer of tortillas. I actually make this using two 8x8s, since I don’t have a bigger one. To make the bottom layer in my small dishes, I cut all the tortillas in half and use 2.5 in each. Just do it however it works best for you. On top of the tortillas, spread 1/2 the refried beans. You can heat them slightly if it helps, but I am too lazy to clean an extra dish. Now add 1/2 the green chiles, 1/2 the salsa, 1/2 the sauteed veggies, and 1/2 the optional cheese or nooch. Repeat starting with the rest of the tortillas and working your way up.

Put the lasagna(s) in the oven and cook for about 30 minutes, until either the cheese melts or they’re heated through.

Serves 4ish as part of a larger meal. He eats it in two servings, and I make three out of mine.

This recipe, obviously, is very flexible. You could saute the veggies with garlic and onions (which I would do if that didn’t take extra time). You could add jalapenos or chopped chipotle peppers. You could ruin it by throwing in black olives — it’s all up to you. I can say we love this with blue corn tortillas, refried black beans, and Trader Joe’s Garlic Chipotle salsa. It’s warm, comforting, and filling, and it reheats nicely.

Embrace the ugly and give this recipe a try.


2 Responses to “Embrace the ugly: Mexican lasagna”

  1. actorsdiet February 7, 2012 at 5:20 pm #

    ive yet to make a pretty lasagna. they’re still my fave to eat though!

  2. Ashley February 8, 2012 at 12:06 am #

    I make something similar to that and love it, but I haven’t made it for T. yet. Thanks for the reminder! I think we’ll try your recipe. 🙂

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