One of our favorite midday meals when the weather turns hot and the garden starts to deliver the goods is Black Bean Tostados with Fresh Pico de Gallo.
The beans are easy to make. You can start with whole dried black beans and, after soaking overnight in water, put them in your pressure cooker with enough water to just cover. Bring the pressure up and when you hear it whistle at you, slow down the heat to medium and let it hiss for 15 minutes. Then turn off the heat and let it rest.
Alternatively, you can use a can of cooked black beans, as we often do in the summer. We generally make two small cans at at time, since the kids pound right through them.
Either way, once you have your beans ready, cook a diced onion in a little oil, add a small teaspoon of cumin for each can, or so, of beans. Don’t use salt if you are using the canned beans. Add ground black pepper to season.
When the onion gets soft, add in the beans and cook on a low heat, working the beans with a potato masher. They will thicken up shortly. Put the beans aside while you get the Pico ready.
Not sure who Pico was, but he made a heck of condiment. We have a lot of roma tomatoes this time of year, and Pico is now a family favorite. Just dice the tomatoes, add minced hot pepper, like poblano or jalepeno, and as much chopped cilantro as the family will let you get away with. A tablespoon of olive oil, salt and pepper always finishes it off just right.
Spread the beans on your tostado shell – we buy ours from the local Mexican grocer – and place in a toaster oven or regular oven for a few minutes to heat it through. Serve with the juicy Pico and a tablespoon of sour cream. You’re welcome.