Mexican recipes are mainly cooked with meats like pork and beef, but some of the vegetarian recipes that they have are equally delicious and indulging. There are quite a generous numbers of Mexican vegetarian dishes that are easy to prepare and very comforting on their own. So, if you want to dump meat in your meal once a week, then going for this wonderful Mexican vegetarian lasagna would be the best replacement for that.
This recipe is similar to Italian lasagna, but the difference lies in the choice of ingredients. Mexican lasagna calls for corn or flour tortillas instead of the lasagna noodles used in the Italian lasagna recipes. Other than that, Mexican vegetarian lasagna calls for beans, corn and non-Italian cheese like cheddar and Monterey jack cheese. But other than that, the preparation process as well as the arrangement process is completely identical. So, collect the ingredients needed and start your preparation for the Mexican vegetarian lasagna.
Difficulty level: Easy
Servings per recipe: 4-5
Time required for preparation: 13 hours
Time required for cooking: 45-55 minutes
1 9×13-inch baking pan or casserole dish
1 stirring spoon
1 large wire strainer
8-10 small corn tortillas
2 cups of red kidney beans or pinto beans, soaked
1 large onion, chopped
1-2 teaspoons of chili powder
2/3rd cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup of fresh or frozen corn kernels
1 medium sized yellow or green bell pepper, chopped
A pinch of cayenne pepper
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup of tomato sauce
1-2 teaspoons of ground cumin
1 cup + ½ cup of Monterey jack cheese
Salt, to taste
Method of Cooking
1. Take the red kidney beans or pinto beans in a bowl and top that with enough water to cover up the beans entirely. Soak the beans overnight in the water to use them the next day. Fill up a saucepan with 2-3 cups of water and place it on the hob. Turn the knob to light the flame and then adjust it to set it on medium high.
Next, if you are using frozen corn kernels, then take them out of the refrigerator and thaw them for 10-15 minutes. Once the water in the saucepan starts boiling vigorously put the thawed or fresh corn kernels in that and boil for 3-4 minutes or until the corn kernels turn soft and inflated with water.
2. While the corn kernels are boiling, set a preheating temperature of 375 degrees Fahrenheit on your oven and grease a baking tray by generously coating it with non-stick cooking spray. Once done, set aside the baking pan and get hold of a deep skillet. Place the skillet on the stove and light the flame to set it on medium. Add 2-3 tablespoons of cooking oil to the skillet and wait for it to heat up.
3. While the oil is heating up, tip the boiled corn kernels into a wire strainer and drain away all the excess water. Shake the strainer to discard the dripping water from it and then transfer the corn kernels to a bowl. Hold your hand 4-5 inches above the skillet.
If you feel hot steam rising from the skillet, then put the chopped onions in the oil. Sauté the onions for 3-4 minutes or until they turn translucent and soft and then add-in the garlic. Sauté the garlic for 1-2 minutes more or until aromatic.
4. Next, add the soaked beans to the onions and garlic in the skillet and cook them for 5 minutes more. Follow that by adding the diced tomatoes, chopped bell peppers and the boiled corn kernels. Stir the mixture and cook on medium heat for 2 minutes and then add the tomato sauce, ground cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, black pepper and the chili powder. Stir all the things together to coat them with the tomato sauce and let the mixture cook uncovered for 2 minutes more.
5. Once done, fetch the prepared baking pan and arrange some of the corn tortillas in it to cover up the entire base of the pan. Spread half of the bean mixture over the tortillas and then top that with half of the shredded cheddar cheese and half of the shredded Monterey jack cheese.
Repeat the same procedure of layering by arranging the corn tortillas first and then finishing with the remaining cheese. Once you are done arranging the lasagna, insert the baking pan into the oven and bake the lasagna for 20-30 minutes or until the cheese at the top turns bubbly and golden brown in color.