Tortillas stacked on top of one another and, in between, an assortment of filling and lots of gooey cheese. The dish is known as taco pie although others refer to it as quesadilla pie. I doubt if it’s an authentic Mexican dish; most probably, it’s Texan-Mexican, or Tex-Mex, in origin.
I made my taco pie with corn tortillas, carnitas, corn, shredded cabbage, tomatoes, chilies, onions and mozzarella cheese. You can use flour tortillas instead and some other combination for the filling. But you have to have cheese because it is the melted cheese that binds the layers together. And because cheese is delicious.
A four-layer six-inch taco pie is good for four if served as a snack or appetizer. If served as a main meal, it is good for two people only.
Makes a four-layer six-inch taco pie.
- 4 six-inch corn (or flour tortillas)
2 tbsps. of softened butter
2 finger chilies
1 onion, thinly sliced
6 stalks of green onions (scallion), finely sliced
2 tbsps. of corn kernels (I used canned; if using fresh or frozen, pre-cook the corn)
about half a cup of finely shredded cabbage
about a cup of carnitas
about 150 g. of shredded mozzarella cheese, divided into four portions
leaves from two to three stalks of cilantro
- Preheat the oven to 375F with both the top and bottom heat on.
Choose a baking pan that is about the same size as the tortilla to prevent the tortilla from sliding sideways, just in case. Butter the bottom and sides of the pan. Press a square of baking paper onto the bottom and sides of the pan and butter the paper as well. You can skip the baking paper part; I just did it so I could lift out the whole taco pie after baking and transfer it to the chopping board without breaking it.
Halve the tomatoes and scoop out the seeds. Most of the liquid of the tomato is in the seeds and you want to get rid of excess liquid that can make the taco pie soggy. So, scoop out the seeds then chop the flesh.
If you want a mildly spicy taco pie, split the chilies and scrape off the seeds and membranes before chopping them.
Assemble the taco pie. Lay a tortilla at the bottom of the baking pan. Scatter the shredded cabbage over it followed by half of the carnitas. Top with shredded cheese.
Place the second tortilla in the dish. Spread the tomatoes, chilies and half of the scallions on it followed by more cheese.
Stack another tortilla. Smother it with the remaining half of the carnitas, the sliced onion, the corn kernels and more cheese.
Butter one side of the last tortilla and lay it on top of the stack, buttered side up. Sprinkle the last portion of cheese on top as well as the remaining scallions. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or just until the cheese melts, the tortillas turn crisp and the top is lightly browned in spots.
Let the taco pie rest for a couple of minutes before cutting. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve.
Cooking time (duration): 40 minutes
Number of servings (yield): 2 to 4
Meal type: snack