A Tex-Mex take on a classic Italian casserole
This is the third of four parts.
Lasagna may be Italian, but the dish lends itself to other cuisines. Give the standard take on the popular casserole a Tex-Mex twist by layering it with fresh flour tortillas - no need for boiling water, colanders, and stirring - with cooked chicken, salsa, corn, and black beans. Only assembly is required.
The dish has other plusses: Snip the tortillas with scissors and you don’t need knives. Set up an assembly line of ingredients so the layering takes only minutes.
When it’s time to cook, cut the tortillas into 3-inch wide strips to approximate lasagna noodles. Leaving them out for a few hours to dry on the counter will be a little like using stale bread for French toast.
The main component is roast chicken, though you can turn this dish vegetarian by adding twice as much corn and black beans. If you have roast chicken from another meal, that’s the best route, or buy a rotisserie chicken from your favorite market. Remove the skin, use those trusty shears to cut the meat into bite-size pieces, or tear it with your fingers. Then rinse canned black beans in a colander and remove corn from some cobs or use frozen corn.
You also need a couple of jars of salsa, mild or spicy, and cheese. The kids can grate it, or you can buy it already grated. Finally, sour cream for between the layers and a little extra for serving.
Let the kids do the layering because it really doesn’t matter how it looks and the order can be what you want it to be, as long as you begin and end with salsa and top it with cheese. Once it’s assembled, bake it right away or refrigerate it for an hour or two. Cook the dish until it’s bubbling at the edges and golden on top. It’s bound to become a family favorite.