Let’s all give a round of applause for this morning’s Washington’s Post article about perfecting nachos. I am ALL ABOUT a good plate of gooey cheese and chips. Yum! Here are the tips they came up with while interviewing a few experts:
— Make multiple small batches instead of one big batch.
— Make the pile higher in the middle than on the edges.
— Corn tortillas are sturdier than flour ones; flour tortillas are more absorbent (and that’s not a good thing).
— Use finely shredded cheese; a mixture of Monterey Jack and a mild cheddar works well.
— Heat the chips (even if you’re using store-bought, restaurant-style corn tortilla chips); heat the salsa or topping. The cheese will stay warm longer.
— Use the broiler in your oven, not the microwave, for melting the cheese on top. Place chips at least seven inches away from the broiler element to keep them from burning.
— Texture and contrast are key: Shoot for a combination of crisp, cool and acidic.
— If you really want to use a cheese sauce, create your own starting with a basic bechamel. Add dry Jack, aged asiago cheese or white cheddar.
— Experiment with toppings. How about nachos Niçoise, with a little chopped hard-cooked egg, olives and grilled tuna; shredded pork with pickled red onions; toasted cumin seeds or caraway seeds on top of Muenster or Jack cheese; a sprinkling of curry powder on top of cheddar; pan-fried corn with avocado crema, grilled scallions and sauteed onions.