Simple Bean and Cheese Flautas
Today we are discussing edible musical instruments. I think it goes without saying that flute is the tastiest of musical instruments. This is known, right?
After all, I don’t know any Tex-Mex foods that are called the “saxofon” or “guitarra.”
Oh, but the flauta is such an easy and delicious thing. For these simple flautas, be sure to use the soft flour tortillas so they roll easily. I kept my filling basic with some black beans, onions, corn, and cheese (obviously).
I’m perfectly happy to make a meal out of a few of these flutes, but they make great party appetizers also. Get rollin’!
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add diced onion and cook for a few minutes to soften.
2) Add diced jalapeno, cumin, chili powder, black beans (drained and rinsed) and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for a few minutes to warm through.
3) Add corn along with 1/2 cup of water and lightly mash mixture in the skillet. Some texture is good.
4) Working with one soft flour tortilla at a time (microwave it for 5 seconds if it isn’t very flexible), add about 2 tablespoons of bean filling and a small pinch of grated cheese. Roll the tortilla tightly into a “flute” shape. Place the tortilla seam-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. You can secure the tortilla with a toothpick, but you probably don’t need to.
5) Repeat until you use all the filling. You should get 12 good sized flautas. Bake the flautas at 350 degrees F. for 15 minutes until cheese is bubbling and tortillas are lightly browned.
Let flautas cool briefly and serve with sour cream, salsa, avocado, and cilantro.
Bean and Cheese Flautas
Before we make some flutes, let’s talk filling. Personally, I really like a bean mixture as a filling. While you could use meat, I think this works best.
Start by adding some butter to a skillet along with some diced onion and spices.
This filling is pretty flexible so feel free to make it your own on the spice front. You could make it smoky with some paprika or spicier with cayenne pepper.
Whatever you do, don’t forget to rinse the black beans before adding them. I like to add some corn and fresh jalapeno also.
Cook that all together for a few minutes over medium heat and then use a potato masher to lightly mash it up in the skillet. You’ll want to add about 1/2 cup of water to this to help with the mashing. Don’t over-mash the beans though. Some texture is good.
Making the Flautas
I prefer to use the Super Soft style of flour tortilla for these so they roll easily. If your tortillas aren’t very flexible you can microwave them for 5 seconds to loosen them up. If you use corn tortillas, you’ll have to fry them in oil briefly to loosen them up (see my homemade taquitos for an example).
Add a few spoonfuls of bean mixture to each tortilla and a pinch of cheese. Don’t add too much cheese or they will just explode.
Then just roll them into a tight cylinder. A flute, if you will!
Place all your flautas on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Be sure to place them seam side down so they stay rolled. You could secure them with a toothpick, but as long as you don’t overfill them, they should stay put without the toothpicks.
Bake these guys at 350 degrees F. for about 15 minutes. They are done with the tortillas are crispy and lightly browned and the filling is bubbly.
Once the bean and cheese flautas are baked, they won’t unroll.
Serve these delicious flutes with sour cream, avocado, salsa, and cilantro.
Delicious little guys!