Yummy Tostadas From Scratch

I've come out from hiding (sort-of) since the first couple of months of my pregnancy were pretty rough with the nausea and the tiredness and all. I thought I'd share a recipe with you that I made quite a while back when my family was visiting. I originaly planned this for my baby brother to show off my culinary skills (ha ha), and to delight his taste buds (hopefully) after a long solitary bus ride to my house (he didn't fit in the car).

I made the tortillas and refried beans from scratch. However, you can buy corn or wheat tortillas and fry them in hot oil until they are crispy. Corn ones might work better for store bought.

Tortilla Recipe (for 18 tortillas):

Stir 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour, and 4 cups of whole wheat flour in a bowl with 2 tsp. of salt. Mix in 1/2 cup of shortening with your hands until the mixture is crumbly, not gooey. In the center, pour in 1 and 1/2 cups of boiling water and mix all until evenly distributed. Sprinke your hands and surface with flour and knead the dough until smooth and no longer sticky.
Make 2" size balls, cover with a dishcloth in a warm, draft free place and let rise for an hour minimum, but can be left out over night or through the day.
Roll the dough out on a floured surface until very thin and fry in hot oil in pan until you see bubbles on the surface, then flip, cook for 15-20 seconds, then flip again. Repeat with remaining tortillas.
Also, I'll include my favorite refritos (refried beans) recipe that I make in my slow cooker. I usually don't measure, but I'll take a guess. You can adjust ingredients to your preference for spiciness, etc.

Refritos: (approx 8 servings for tostadas)

2 cups dry pinto beans, soaked and cooked in boiling water
2 Tbs. olive oi1
1 minced onion
6 or more cloves of garlic, minced
4 tsp cumin
2 tsp salt
fresh black pepper to taste
1 small jalepeno (optional)
1 small bell pepper (optional)

Saute onion, 3 cloves of garlic, cumin, and salt in olive oil until onions are soft. Add peppers and saute a few minutes longer. Add the rest of the garlic and black pepper. Add the beans and mix, them mash with a fork and cook a while longer. Can be stored in the fridge and reheated. Another option is to add the sauteed vegetables to the beans in a slow cooker and cook on low overnight or through the day (this is what I usually do), making sure to add some extra water to the beans first.

Tostada Toppings (suggestions):

chopped olives
grated cheese
chopped tomatoes
diced avocado or guacamole
sliced jalapenos
sour cream
shredded lettuce
hot sauce
nacho cheese sauce
sauteed onions and peppers