Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Mexican Bean Bake with Cheesy Corn Souffle (Vegetarian)




This recipe has a lot of steps, but it’s a tasty, vegetarian, protein-packed meal that costs almost nothing to make.

Ingredients

For the beans:

  • 1 lbs dry pinto beans (or some such bean) or 4 cans
  • 1/2 cup rice
  • 1 onion
  • 2 cups (16oz) of tomato salsa (whatever’s on sale)
  • 3 tbs cumin
  • 2 tbs cayenne pepper (I used chipotle powder though)
  • 1 tbs. oregano (Mexican if you have it)
  • 2 tbs. garlic powder
  • Salt and additional seasoning to taste.
  • Some sliced green olives if you want them. I did, but they work better with meat.

Topping:

  • 1 cup frozen corn, pulverized in food processor
  • 2 cups milk
  • 4 tbsp. butter
  • 4 tbsp flour (Wondra works best)
  • 8 oz shredded cheese (colby, muenster or jack)
  • 6 egg whites
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tsp salt

Directions:

  1. If you are using dried beans, cook them. I just put them right in the slow cooker, cover with water (plus 1”-2”and heat on high for several hours.
  2. Cook the rice
  3. Add all the bean ingredients together. You could sauté the onions first, or don’t. See if care.
  4. Put it all in 2 9x13 baking dishes (or one really big one like I did).
  5. Melt butter in saucepan
  6. Stir in flour to make a paste
  7. Whisk in milk and keep under medium heat until thickened.
  8. Add cheese, corn and egg yolks and turn off heat
  9. Whip egg yolks until soft peaks form
  10. Fold yolks into cheese sauce slowly and carefully
  11. Pour over beans and bake at 400 for 1 hour or so (until topping is set)

Frugal Factor: $2.50 for the cheese, $1.50 for the beans, $1.50 for the beans, $2 for the salsa, $2 for everything else. Serves 12. That’s $0.75/serving.