Pico de Gallo: In a bowl, combine tomatoes, onion, jalapeños, cilantro and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper and set aside. The salsa is best prepared for optimum flavor 1 hour in advance.
Meat: Cook *beef and chorizo in a heated skillet, breaking chorizo meat into small pieces, until browned and cooked through. Set aside. *Although the chorizo is wonderfully seasoned, my husband added a little more spices and such to the meat mixture: chipotle powder, cumin, part of a small cinnamon stick or small pinch of ground cinnamon, Mexican oregano, very small amount of salt-free garlic powder and black pepper -- that I can remember.
Heat up the refried beans and simmer on low until ready to serve. Add more cooking liquid if the beans start to dry out.
For the thick tortillas, mix masa and salt in a bowl. Add 1 1/4 to 11/2 c of water and knead for 1-2 min until dough comes together and is pliable. (A food processor works well for this step.) If the dough seems too dry, add more water, a tablespoon or so at a time.
Divide dough into 8 equal portions and form into balls.
To Make Sopes: Press the dough with your fingers from the center outwards to create a shallow, flat bowl approximately 5" in diameter. Heat 1" of vegetable oil in a skillet to 350° and fry tortillas approximately 2 min each side, until golden brown. Remove from oil and place onto paper towels.
To Make Tostadas: Take each portion/ball of dough and flatten either with a tortilla press or with a rolling pin to about shy 1/2" thickness. Fry the same way as indicated in Step above.
To assemble, place a tortilla onto a plate, top with refried beans, ground beef and chorizo mix, pico de gallo, cheese and shredded cabbage/lettuce and radishes. Add a dollop of crema and garnish with cilantro and lime.
Serving suggestions: I placed the garnishes on a large platter for a "Build-Your-Own" Tostada Bar. Best part of this recipe? LEFTOVERS! Our sides: Mexican Rice
and Mexican Style Fruit Salad
(subbing strawberries, Texas Red Star grapefruit and Valencia oranges for the melons.).