How one can Make Vegetarian Casado


After one of many many weeks I’ve spent in Costa Rica, the place monkeys howl and waves crash and the locals envelop you of their unimaginable heat, I used to be impressed to attempt making one in all their customary dishes referred to as casado. The phrase “casado” means “married particular person” in Spanish, and since I’m principally married to this meal each time I go to Costa Rica, it truly makes a whole lot of sense to me!

Whereas my handmade corn tortilla method continues to be, um, a creating ability, and the meal appeared …rustic, it was truly tremendous yummy—my entire household cherished it. By utilizing retailer purchased corn tortillas and canned black beans, prep time might drop to about quarter-hour, making it a sensible dish for working households, too. If it is a Sunday and you are feeling affected person, attempt making the tortillas by hand, whereas chanting the next mantra: ugly tortillas are folks too.


  • One bag of masa harina
  • Scorching water per masa harina directions
  • 2 cans of natural black beans, rinsed
  • 1/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon floor cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon floor coriander
  • 1 cup cotija cheese, crumbled (omit for a vegan meal)
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups cooked, natural brown rice or quinoa
  • 3-4 plantains
  • 3 T vegetable oil of selection for sautéing
  • 2 avocados
  • 2 limes, one halved, one quartered


Ideally, you may need to make the dough an hour forward of time, and save the tortilla cooking for the final 20 minutes earlier than the meal so they’re served toasty and heat.

I used the gluten-free masa harina from Bob’s Crimson Mill, however any masa harina flour will do when you’re not super-sensitive to gluten. Masa harina corn flour that is been handled with a lime water answer to make it extra digestible. Making the dough is absurdly simple: you simply add heat water. The exhausting half comes with rolling it to the precise thickness and cooking for the correct quantity of time, however the one method to determine it out is to start out making them! Costa Rican ladies make these by hand, however I used parchment paper, a reducing board, and a rolling pin. This is my method: pull off golf-ball sized piece of dough, roll it into a bit of sphere, and put it between two items of parchment paper. Then, use the reducing board for the preliminary smoosh of the dough right into a disc. Pull the paper away on either side, after which use the rolling pin to roll it right into a thinner disc, peeling the paper away and flipping the disc usually, till you’ve gotten what looks like an raw tortilla to you. Place the tortilla right into a sizzling, dry forged iron skillet over medium warmth and cook dinner for 1-2 minutes per aspect, or so long as essential to make you’re feeling that you simply now have a cooked tortilla. Maintain heat within the oven or in a tortilla hotter when you end cooking the others. Like I stated, do not be mad if the primary one seems to be scary. They’re like kids—the primary one is the toughest, and then you definately get the grasp of it.


Really easy! Warmth black beans on low warmth with 1/4 cup of vegetable inventory, a beneficiant squeeze of lime, cumin, chili powder, and coriander. Maintain heat and put aside. 


Have you ever labored with plantains earlier than? They’re like grumpy bananas. Not as candy, very fibrous, and tougher to peel. Utilizing a pointy knife, slice the pores and skin alongside the size of the plantain in two locations and peel the pores and skin. Reduce every diagonally into 1.5 inch slices. Warmth vegetable oil in a skillet and add the plantain slices, sautéing for 4-5 minutes till brown on one aspect. Flip and brown the opposite aspect, then take away and drain on paper towels.



Placing the dish collectively is very like placing paint colours on a palette. The part components of the meal are usually not all heaped collectively however served in little, adjoining piles so you possibly can customise every chew. It is so pleasing, actually.

To assemble, spoon 1/2 cup of rice or quinoa and 1/2 cup of seasoned black beans onto a plate. Add 3-4 slices of avocado, a number of tablespoons of cotija cheese, 5-6 slices of plantain, and a handful of cilantro. Place a contemporary, heat tortilla within the heart, and serve with a juicy wedge of lime.

As you get pleasure from this wholesome, vegetarian meal, think about these two Costa Rican phrases that permeate their tradition and infect your spirit in probably the most constructive manner. First, relatively than saying hi there or goodbye, they are saying “pura vida,” which interprets into their life philosophy: “An actual dwelling—to dwell a peaceable, easy, uncluttered life with a deep appreciation for nature, household, and pals.” Second, as an alternative of claiming “de nada” for you are welcome (“it is nothing”), they are saying “con mucho gusto,” which suggests “with a lot pleasure.” These small nuances in vocabulary make a profound distinction within the tradition of the nation, simply as a small kindness can have an effect on the entire taste of somebody’s day. 

With love and lumpy corn tortillas, 





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