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  • Preheat an outdoor grill or preheat a broiler to high and position a rack on the second shelf. Dress the corn with a little oil and season with a sprinkle of chile powder, salt and pepper. Grill or broil the corn, turning occasionally, until tender and evenly charred, 12 to 15 minutes. Invert a small bowl in a larger bowl. Using tongs, remove the corn from the grill or broiler and steady the ears upright, 1 at a time, on the inverted bowl. Using the back of a knife, scrape the kernels from the cobs. Dress with the lime juice.

  • In a small saucepan, bring the cream, chipotle, adobo sauce and lime peel to a boil over medium heat on the stovetop only (cream requires a babysitter and the grill heat is too high). Lower the heat to a low, slow boil and cook until reduced slightly.

  • In another small saucepan, combine the refried beans and 1/4 cup water on the grill or over medium-low heat. Heat through and remove from the grill.

  • While the beans heat, line up your toppings. Char the tortillas on the grill or under the broiler, then top with the beans and some of the cheese. Melt under a covered grill or the broiler for 1 minute. Save a little cheese for garnish.

  • Serve 2 tostadas per person. Top each tostada with a mound of corn, the chipotle cream, the remaining cheese, the lettuce, tomatoes, onion, pickled chiles and cilantro, if using.