Suzi's Blog

Super Bowl Nachos

nachos

If nachos are on your menu for Sunday’s Super Bowl, then I recommend this version. It’s the second best nachos I ever had. The best? On the other side of the border, of course.

Using a great chili recipe [there's one right here] and topping the avocado crema gives you a rich, fulling nosh. This one supports beer, margaritas, and even a dark red wine.

I tried to get the recipe for those best nachos, but I did not speak French. Yes, French. The border was Canada, not Mexico. The restaurant was in Toronto with some refugees from Montreal who spoke French and cooked Mexican.

Food is global. And you”ll enjoy this treat.

Brian’s Super Chili Nachos

Yield: serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 5 ounces corn tortilla chips
  • 8 ounces grated cheddar cheese [or Monterey Jack or Pepper Jack]
  • ¾ cup candied jalapenos, or more depending on your tolerance
  • 1 large onion finely diced
  • 2 cups chili [ideally Tom Valenti’s Texas-Style Chili, recipe follows]
  • Sour cream, avocado creama, diced tomatoes, or additional grated cheese as garnishes [avocado crema recipe follows]

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 475°.

Spread the tortilla chips evenly over pan [half-sheet] lined with foil.  Cover evenly with the grated cheese.  Evenly sprinkle the jalapenos and diced onions.

Top with the chili.  This is best done a spoonful at a time.  Just try to cover in bite size globs.  Spreading the chili evenly over the other ingredients is not easy, and not necessary.

Bake the nachos for about 7 minutes, until the cheese is fully melted.  If the chili is leftovers and has been refrigerated, it may take about 10 minutes to fully heat the dish.

Remove from the oven and serve with the garnishes.

Source: Brian O’Rourke

 

Avocado Crema

Yield: 1 cup

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe avocado, peeled and pit removed
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Variations are unlimited, but consider: chili powder of any variety, garlic, chives, cilantro, or green chili

Preparation:

Puree all the ingredients in a blender or food processor for one or two minutes.  Sample the taste and add additional seasoning — salt or white pepper — to suit your palette.

Source: Macho Nacho by Kate Heykoe

 

Texas Style Chili

Yield: Serves 6+

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds beef chuck, cut into 1-inch chunks, trimmed of fat
  • Coarse salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into small dice
  • 1 large Spanish onion, peeled and cut into small dice
  • 1 stalk celery, cut into small dice
  • 2 bell peppers, seeded and cut into small dice
  • 10 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 heaping tablespoons tomato paste
  • Pinch of sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 quart store-bough reduced-sodium beef broth
  • 4 plum tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin, plus more to taste
  • 1 ancho chile, seeded, stemmed, and minced
  • 2 15-ounce cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • Sour cream, grated cheddar cheese, Tabasco sauce, and minced onion or scallions, optional.

Preparation:

Put the meat in a bowl and season with 1 tablespoon each of salt pepper garlic powder and chili powder. Set aside.

Warm the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.  Add the meat and cook until browned all over, 7 to 10 minutes, then transfer to a plate and set aside.

Drain off all but a few tablespoons of liquid from the pot. Add the carrots, onion, celery, bell peppers, and garlic, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring, until softened but not browned, about five minutes. Add the tomato paste and sugar and stir to coat the vegetables.

Return the meat to the pot sprinkle the flour over the meat stirred in, working quickly to keep it from browning.

Add the vinegar and stir to loosen any bits of flour or meet stuck to the bottom of the pot.  Add the broth in small increments, stirring to prevent lumps add the tomatoes proven, and showed chili stir. Bring the liquid to a boil over high heat.

Cover the pot, reduce the heat so that the liquid just simmers, and cook for one hour. Add the beans and continue to cook until they are very tender, about 15 minutes. If not serving immediately, but cool, cover, and refrigerate for a few days or freeze for up to one month. Reheat before conditioning very

To serve, divide the chili among six bowls and pass garnishes at the table in individual bowls, inviting everyone to doctor his or her chili to taste.

Source: Tom Valenti’s Soups, Stews, and One-Pot Meals by Tom Valenti

Thanksgiving Leftovers: Turkey Enchiladas with Creams Tomatillo Sauce

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turkey enchiladas
I posted this recipe in early 2010, at my daughter’s request, but I’m doing it again because tomorrow you will have leftover turkey and this is just the best possible way to enjoy it. It’s not “leftovers.” It’s “delicious” and rich and different.

The enchiladas are paired with one of my favorite foods: tomatillos.  This green fruit is a staple of Mexican cuisine.  Although in the same botanical family as the tomato, a tomatillo is definitely not a tomato.  If you’ve had green salsa with a bite, you’ve enjoyed the particular intensity that only a tomatillo can supply. In this recipe that inherent tomatillo sting is muted into a voluptuous cream sauce that is an outstanding match for that distinctive turkey flavor.  Your mouth is simply going to resonate with a symphony of tones.

When I make this dish, I do follow the recipe but I am heavy handed with the amount of green onion and green chiles. And I suggest sticking with the canned tomatillos, not the salsa verde.

You can garnish the whole dish with cilantro or sliced scallions for one more level of flavor.

Turkey Enchiladas with Creamy tomatillo Sauce

Ingredients:

2 cups shredded roast turkey
2 green onions, including tender green tops, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons cream cheese at room temperature
1 ⅓cups (5 ½ ounces) shredded Monterey Jack Cheese
2 cans (7 ounces each) salsa verde or 1 can (13 ounces) tomatillos, drained
2 tablespoons canned chopped green chiles, drained
½ cup fresh cilantro leaves
⅔ cup heavy (whipping) cream
¼ cup canola oil
8 corn tortillas

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl, combine the turkey, green onions, cream cheese, and 1 cup of the jack cheese and stir to mix thoroughly. Set aside.

In a blender or food processor, combine the tomatillo, chiles, cilantro, and cream and process until smooth.

Heat the oil in a heavy, 6 -inch skillet over medium-high heat. Using tongs, carefully place one tortilla at a time in the hot oil and fry for 5 to 10 seconds just until softened. Flip the tortilla and soften the other side. Drain over the skillet, and place on a plate lined with a paper towel. Place another paper towel on top and press to absorb the oil. Repeat until all 8 tortillas are softened and drained.

Divide the turkey mixture among the tortillas (about ½cup each), mounding it in a line down the center. Roll tightly and then place, seam side down, in a 7 x 11″ baking pan. Pour the tomatillo cream sauce over the enchiladas, and sprinkle the remaining ⅓cup jack cheese down the center. Bake for about 20 minutes until heated through and bubbly. Serve immediately.

Source: The New Thanksgiving Table by Diane Morgan