Zacatecan Baked Masa Cakes (Gorditas Zacatecanas)
These crisp, bean-filled masa cakes are not only vegan and gluten-free, they're a great anytime snack for everybody.
Yield: serves 8
For the Bean Filling
- 2 dried New Mexico chiles, stemmed and seeded
- 3⁄4 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 tbsp. canola oil
- 2 cups cooked pinto beans
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the Gorditas
- 2 cups masa harina
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 1⁄2 cup vegetable shortening
- Make the bean filling: Heat chiles in a 10″ skillet over high heat and cook, turning, until lightly toasted, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a blender with cumin, garlic, and 1⁄2 cup water; puree until smooth. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat and add chile mixture, beans, salt, and pepper; mash with a fork and cook, stirring often, until thickened but not dry, about 20 minutes. Set aside.
- Make the gorditas: Heat oven to 400°. In a large bowl, whisk together masa harina and salt; add shortening and 1 1⁄4 cups water, and stir until dough forms. Divide into eight 2″ balls (about 2 1⁄2 oz. each); flatten each into a 1⁄4″-thick disk, and place 1 heaping tbsp. bean filling in center. Wrap disk around filling, pinching edges together to seal, then transfer, seam side down, to a parchment paper–lined baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes.