Vegetarian Southwestern “Lasagna”

4 Jan

After the insane amount of food, calories, and cholesterol consumed in New Orleans, I thought I would take a light and healthy approach to this week’s dinners.  I’ve also resolved to eat more whole grains and less meat in the new year, so I’ve been thinking of fun ways to incorporate protein into our dinners while eating vegetarian.  Thus was born the idea for a Southwestern-themed vegetarian “lasagna.”  This dish was very filling, tasty, and easy.  It’s a doubly good dish because you can make it ahead of time and refrigerate overnight or for a day or two or freeze for a week or so before serving (just be sure to extend your cooking time accordingly if you do that).

Again, I apologize for the shoddy photo – it’s another cell phone picture.  I should be getting my digital camera back tomorrow and then we’ll be back to normal photo quality (that is, average at best).

Vegetarian Southwestern “Lasagna”

3 whole wheat tortillas (or enough to create 3 layers in your casserole dish)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 small red onion, diced

2 tbs. olive oil

2 plum or roma tomatoes, diced

1 jalapeño, diced

1 tbs. tomato paste

1 chipotle in adobo sauce, seeds removed and diced

1 tbs. adobo sauce

1/2 cup whole corn kernels

1 1/2 cups canned black beans

1 tsp. ground cumin

1 tbs. cilantro, roughly chopped

1 1/2 cups canned refried beans

1/4 cup black olives, roughly chopped

1/4 cup mild cheddar cheese

1 4 oz. can whole green chiles

Non-stick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350º.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add garlic and onion and sauté until soft and translucent, 5-6 minutes.  Add jalapeño and sauté until fragrant, 1-2 minutes.  Add tomatoes, corn kernels, chipotle pepper, adobo sauce and tomato paste and simmer until tomato paste has dispersed, stirring frequently, about 3 minutes.

Spray casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.  Place one tortilla on the bottom of the casserole dish.  Top with 3 heaping tablespoons of refried beans and smooth to an even layer.  Sprinkle with 1 tbs. or so of black olives and 1 tbs. or so of cheddar cheese.  Take one whole green chile and cut into quarters, lengthwise.  Top refried beans, olives, and cheddar with green chile.  Add about 1/2 cup of black bean mixture.  Top with another tortilla and repeat.  On top of third and final tortilla, add another tbs. or refried beans, remaining black olives, and remaining cheese.

Cover with tinfoil and bake in oven 35-40 minutes until heated through, removing tinfoil for last 5 minutes until cheese bubbles.

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