Sometimes you just need simple. And simple is what I need this week – it’s an insane one for me! So I’ll be subsisting off easy-but-healthy meals like these bell pepper and refried-bean tacos.One of my favorite things about whole eating is the concept that simple food doesn’t have to mean shit food. Apologies for throwing the curse word out there, but it’s true, isn’t it? You can make meals that are quick and still healthy and full of whole ingredients. This meal would be even healthier if you used dried black beans that you cooked on your own instead of canned refried ones. I am trying to wean myself off of canned goods because of the nasty BPA that studies have shown leaches out of cans and into the food. Several brands now offer BPA-free cans, including Eden Organic and its line of canned beans. Since the latter are quite expensive, I’ve been going the dried-bean route instead. It does take planning with the need to soak the beans for at least six to eight hours and then simmer them for an hour, but now that I’m getting used to it, it’s really not so bad. It’s just meant getting in the habit of using forethought and planning. Hopefully I will wean myself off of canned items for good very soon. What’s making it hard is my obsession with the Meijer (a major supermarket chain in my area) line of organic refried beans. They are awesome; the chili-lime and the black-bean-with-jalapeños varieties are my favorites! I used the chili-lime refried beans in this recipe.
A packaged ingredient that I did go quite clean with here are the tortilla wraps. It took me a while to find a good non-GMO tortilla; I wasn’t seeing them at standard supermarkets, so I went to Better Health, another area grocery chain that is wonderful – it’s similar to Whole Foods. I found the Maria and Ricardo’s multi-grain tortilla wraps that I used in this recipe there. Non-GMO-Project-Certified and made with organic flour, they are a little thinner and more delicate than your typical wrap. But the multi-grain flavor came out in a rich, lovely way when I fried them. Okay, frying doesn’t exactly fit in with the healthy theme here, but we’ve got to have a little fun, right?
The following ingredients should be enough to produce at least four tacos.
-One 15-ounce can of refried beans, or similar quantity of cooked dried beans
-Cooking oil, about one tablespoon per tortilla -One package of tortilla wraps, preferably non-GMO/organic
-A package of shredded or sliced cheese, preferably hormone-free/organic (I used cheese slices – one half-slice per taco. Pepper-jack cheese is awesome on tacos.)
-One can of your favorite organic/natural salsa
-One yellow bell pepper, sliced into strips
-One red bell pepper, sliced into strips
-Three fresh jalapeños, with seeds removed and diced
-Half of a large onion, diced
-One lime, cut into wedges
Heat up refried beans. In a frying pan over medium-high heat, fry each tortilla in about a tablespoon’s worth of oil. Each side of the tortilla will need to cook for only about thirty seconds to a minute – possibly less, considering how hot the pan is. Once the tortilla is done cooking, move to a plate and immediately add the cheese, pressing it down onto the hot tortilla to help make it more melty. Add the desired quantities of refried beans, bell pepper slices, diced jalapeños, and diced onion. Top with salsa and a squeeze of lime juice, and kick back and enjoy!