Vegan Mexican Sopes {Sopes de Frijoles con Queso Vegana}

A beautiful and lovely friend of my husband and I, comes to mind when I think of sopes. Again, heritage talk - I love Mexican food - It is in my veins! And I love all things authentic (that means "no" to both Taco Bell & Taco Time), and homemade.

One thing that the friend I told you about, Maria, taught us was how to make good and soft sopes.

(pronounced 'soap-ess')

I remember trying her sopes one evening in 2011 and they were so amazing, that I thought she cheated and went out to buy. But no. This lady hand made every sope and made them literally to perfection.

A perfect golden tint, with literally the best homemade frijoles I have EVER tried...they were Flor de Mayo (or Flor de Junio) Beans. Big - veluptous - pinto on steroid type beans...

Can you use veluptuous to describe a bean?? Probably not.

They were just perfect sopes. You get the point.

And well, I guess after these couple years, I still remembered how to pull of what she showed me! A perfectly delicious sope! With of course, beans and cheese.

For this recipe, I used pintos though. Why? Because Flor de Mayo/Junio beans do not grow in the USA & we could only buy them from Mexicans that get them from Mexico when we were in California.

But, no worries - the pinto version is the closest in flavor (still that same creamy flavor and texture), and is still very yummy.

Authentically, this recipe would use crumbled cojita cheese, but I just used crumbled Daiya havarti cheese. Tastes just as good.

Ingredients:

For the Sopes:
1 1/2 cups warm water
a small squeeze of lime juice
1/2 tsp sea salt
2 cups masa harina (I use Bob's Red Mill, but you can also use Maseca)
1/4 cup oil, for frying

For the Toppings:
1 to 1 1/2, 15 or 16 oz. can low sodium pinto beans (drain a little of the water from each can)
2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cumin
dash chili powder
sea salt, to taste
1/3 cup vegan havarti cheese (I use Daiya brand, crumbled) plus some to sprinkle on top
1 guacamole recipe (click here)

Directions:

In a glass mixing bowl, add water, salt, and lime to a bowl. Mix, and then add the masa harina and again mix thoroughly. This will be easiest to do with your hands after a few seconds of mixing with a spoon. Do this until you form a soft dough. If the dough is dry, add more water, up to 1 1/2 cups total (any more will be too watery).

Divide masa dough into medium/small balls, and flatten into disks about 1/4 inch thick and 2 to 2 1/2 inches in width.

Preheat an un-oiled pan now on medium-low heat, and add then add oil.

Once the pan is heated, add as many sopes as can comfortably fit, and cook each sope for about 2-5 minutes on each side. These will become lightly browned- a golden color, and a little crisp.

When both sides have been cooked on the sopes, carefully remove from the pan, and place each on a plate that is covered with a paper towel to drain excess oil.

For the toppings...

Prepare beans (by heating them in a sauce pan, adding seasonings, then finally adding in cheese and stirring in well), guacamole (by recipe here), and vegan cheese for sprinkling on top, for the sope while sopes are frying.

When sopes are done...

On each sope, add about 2 tbsp of pinto bean/cheese mix. Then, top with guacamole, vegan sour cream (optional), and vegan crumbled Daiya cheese. Serve with your favorite sauce, or as is. You can add salsa (preferably pico de gallo), to this recipe as well!

Serve warm. Sopes do not keep well, so they must be eaten same day.

~Bella

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