Alamo, where Jalapeño jelly is very popular!!

"Secrets to Cooking TexMex"

Nachos with fresh guacamole

Nachos 101
There are no doubt several versions of nachos ranging from those 
round discs and yellow goo served at football games to the Belle 
Grande type served at the Bell arches. These are authentic San 
Antonio style TexMex using the whole corn tortilla, either red, 
white, or yellow. They can be served as appetizers, or pile lot’s 
of goodies on them for a complete meal.



The first step is to fry the tortillas, one at a time in the hot oil.
I recommend about 2 per person being served.

Gently put one corn tortilla in the hot oil. With a pair of tongs,
turn the tortilla over after about 10 seconds. Let it fry in the oil 
for about 2 minutes, then turn again. It is right if one side has a 
slight curve. 

  Corn Tortilla frying in hot oil

Remove and drain on a paper towel.

       Fried Corn Tortillas out of hot oil

Heat your refried beans in a small pot. If using fresh, then mash 
until very smooth and creamy. If using canned, add salt, pepper, 
chili powder, garlic powder, and picante sauce to taste. Add 1/2 cup 
water and simmer on low for 20 minutes, stirring often. Turn off heat 
so beans will thicken. 

    Small pan of refried beans

Grate the cheese using a fine or medium size blade.

 Now we’re ready to assemble.

While your broiler is heating up, spread a thin layer (less than 1/4 inch) 
of refried beans on each tortilla shell being careful not to break the shell. 
I find a rubber spatula the ideal utensil for this job while holding the shell 
flat in my other hand.

Next, take a small handful (1/2 cup per shell) of the cheese and gently lay 
it in the middle of the fried shell on top of the beans. Spread the cheese out
toward the edges of the shell, stopping about 1/2 inch from the edge. 
You can also choose to mix cheddar and Monterey jack for a really unique 
taste. Most stores now sell blocks of this combination ready to grate.


Lay the shells, now with beans and cheese on top, on a flat cookie sheet. 
A non-stick sheet pan makes cleanup easier, but also spraying a light coat
of vegetable oil (i.e. Pam) before putting the shells on a regular sheet pan 
also works great.

The broiler should be red hot by this time, so gently slide your tray under
the broiler element for about 1-2 minutes.

Check and remove when cheese is hot and bubbly.


Remove one nacho at a time with a spatula and put on a cutting board. 
At this time, add any of your optional toppings.

Optional  popular toppings are ground beef (seasoned), sour cream, olives, guacamole, 
pico de gallo, and diced tomato’s.

With a pizza rolling cutter, roll the cutter over the shell halfway across. 
Now rotate the shell and do this one more time.            


With the spatula, take 1/2 of the nacho at a time and place on a plate or platter. 
 If plain nachos are the goal, then put 1 piece of sliced jalapeno on each quarter 
and serve immediately. 

This is a fun patio party appetizer using a small ‘toaster oven’ to melt the cheese. 
Put the optional condiments in individual bowls and let your guests build their 
own personalized nachos.



Questions ? or Comments:
Copyright 1998-2005 "Secrets to Cooking Tex-Mex/Michael W. Ludwig. All rights reserved.