2 tablespoons vegetable oil; olive, canola, or whatever
3 tablespoons flour
1 1/2 cups water
2-3 tsp. chili powder, more or less for taste
2 tsp. ground cumin
salt, to taste
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
3 flour tortillas, requisma/gordita size
1/4 lb. or so ground beef
1/4 small onion, chopped
3/4 cups grated chedder cheese
1/2 cup rice, cooked (measure is for uncooked rice)
16 oz. can refried beans (I use fat-free ones for less calories)
cilantro leaves, lettuce, tomato & green onion for serving
sour cream or plain yogurt for serving
To make the sauce: heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the flour and stir to make a paste. Add the water
while stirring, so sauce thickens. If it's lumpy, run it through your blender. Add the chili powder,
cumin, salt, and garlic and stir thoroughly so there aren't any lumps. (Use the blender again if you have
to, it won't hurt anything). To make the meat: brown the beef and the onion. Drain off any fat or liquid.
To assemble: place a tortilla on the bottom of a casserole dish or baking
dish, or whatever you have to bake something in, preferably not metal. Layer half of the beef, a third of the cheese,
rice, a heaping spoonsful of the beans, and a third of the sauce on top of the tortilla. Put another
tortilla on top of that. Repeat the layering process. Put the third tortilla on top, spread the rest
of the sauce on top, and sprinkle the last of the cheese on that. Sprinkle a few finely chopped
green onion on top, and bake (350 degrees) until the cheese on top is melty. Serve with finely chopped
lettuce, tomatoes, cilantro leaves, and green onions heaped on and around the casserole serving. This is
also good with a little sour cream, or my preference, plain yogurt on top as well.
This is a filling dinner for two big appetite or three small appetite people.
Note: Don't stress about the sauce. I make this so often I don't even measure anymore, just dump a few spoonfuls of oil and flour in and so forth. If you don't stick to the measurements exactly, it will still be fine. Also, this is a really utilitarian sauce for use with many other Mexican foods--try it in burritos or as a taco sauce or whatever.