A luscious, silky, saucy cheese touting beguiling amounts of poblano, jalapeno, green chilies, black pepper and fresh tomato, swooped over warm-from-the-oven tortilla chips.  Gutsy, spicy, brazen!  


We eat a lot of nachos at our house.  Always have.  Nachos kind of sum up all those Mexican flavours and textures and spiciness, that we so crave.

Sometimes we go all fresh chopped veggies, with oodles of frijoles and handfuls of Monterey jack, Cheddar or Havarti, then serve with spice-ridden guac. Sometimes we have 'wet' nachos, rather chilaquile-ish by nature, with Mom's old enchilada sauce and BBQ steak strips, finished with one cheese or another and cool dollops of sour cream......sometimes we scatter chili-spiced pinto beans over roasted chicken chunks and fresh sliced Walla Walla onions, atop crispy corn tortilla chips, with a crown of oodles of 'old' cheddar melted all over the place.

But lately, there's a new kid in town that we just can't get enough of.  Saucy nachos, baby!!

Before settling back to this particular four-peppered chile con queso being our house favorite, I did my fair share of experimenting with various cheeses, bound together like a classic cheese sauce. with a roux.  I did this in an effort to not use Velveeta.  Not because Velveeta is taboo in our house, but because I wanted what I thought to be a more 'pure' queso. 

Well, you know what?  Now that I've played and tried and experimented this way and that, I've come to the conclusion that Velveeta does make a 'pure' queso.  Purely good.....for texture, for the way it gets all in cahoots with the rest of the ingredients and for the way it finishes on our plates and palates.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Our house really likes the pow of spicy foods, so I used a big jalapeno, seeds and all, and this batch of queso definitely packed a fine, fiery wallop.  If you like just a little heat, then I would suggest still using a jalapeno, but tame things down by removing all seeds and membrane, before chopping. That's what I'll do too, when we serve this to company.  Quesochips

This time, instead of our usual store-bought, good-quality corn tortilla chips, I bought a package of big tortillas that were a flour-corn cross, cut them up and deep-fried them, quickly, in my wok.  I was after a chip a little more tender to the bite.  These are that, and they made Forest Grump do a happy dance.

I put a generous, single layer of these chips on a big sheet pan, sprinkled with canned pinto beans and some little chunks of just-barbecued chorizo sausages, baked at 350F for about 10 minutes, to warm everything through.  Once out of the oven, warmed queso was spooned over the chips and garnished with chopped green onions and a few thin, fresh jalapeno slices.

Oh Mama!  Mucho bueno!  Mucho!

It doesn't matter if you scatter beans, chorizo, chicken, steak, barbecued ribs and corn, or whatever your pleasure on those chips, once you scoop queso on top, those babies all come together to create some damn yummy, saucy nachos.

Oh yeah, and don't forget that P-P-P-Peppered Queso is great just as it is, as a dip, served warm, with tortilla chips on the side.


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 Adapted from Junebug on and a tiny bit from Macheesmo
for The Last Wonton

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- Enough queso for 6 dinner-ish size, or 10-12 appy size, nacho servings.

1 tablespoon butter + 1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium fresh poblano pepper, chopped quite fine
1 pound Velveeta, cut into chunks
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup half-and-half or whole milk
1 large jalapeno, finely chopped (remove seeds for a mild heat)
1, 4-ounce tin diced green chilies
2 firm, ripe tomatoes, chopped
Good little schwack freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Optional: 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Tortilla chips
Pinto beans
Chorizo sausage, steak slices, roasted chicken pieces
Sliced or chopped onions or green onions
Fresh jalapenos, very thinly sliced

For queso: Heat butter and olive oil, over medium heat, in medium saucepan.  Add chopped poblano peppers and saute 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Reduce heat if browning or cooking too fast. 

Reduce heat to medium low, add Velveeta, cream cheese, half-and-half, or milk and chopped jalapeno.  Stir occasionally, until cheeses are melted and mixture is smooth and combined.  Add green chilies, chopped tomato and black pepper, to taste.  Stir to combine.

Remove from heat, if making ahead, or reduce heat to lowest setting while putting together nachos.

For nachos: preheat oven to 350F.  Spread tortilla chips, in a generous single layer on large, rimmed, baking sheet.  Top with pinto beans and chorizo sausage chunks, or your choice of toppings.  Bake for 8-10 minutes until everything is heated through.  Remove from oven, and spoon warm P-P-P-Peppered Queso, on top.  Garnish with sliced green onions and thin jalapeno slices, or whatever tickles your fancy.  Scoop onto serving plates with pancake spatula and indulge.  Muchas gracias!

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sau-cy - /ˈsôsē/

bold and lively, cheeky, impudent, jaunty, brazen