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Category: Appetizers

B.S. Taqueria's nachos

B.S. Taqueria's nachos
Gary Coronado / Los Angeles Times

Around here, we spend a lot of time thinking about what to serve for dinner and why, whether it’s a holiday feast that requires days to construct or a meal with all the simplicity of a Flemish still life. Planning ... Read more

Total time: About 2 hours, plus overnight soaking time | Serves 12 to 16
Note: Adapted from a recipe from B.S. Taqueria in Los Angeles.

Pinto beans

  • 1 pound dry pinto beans
  • 1 white onion, quartered
  • 3 habanero peppers

Step 1Soak the beans in water to cover overnight, then drain and rinse. In a large pot, combine the beans, onion and peppers with enough cold water to cover. Simmer until the beans are tender and soft, careful not to overcook, about 1 hour, adding additional water if needed. Drain and discard the onion and pepper. Cover and refrigerate if not using immediately, then rewarm before serving. This makes about 1½ quarts of beans.

Picadillo

  • 2 to 4 tablespoons oil, or as needed
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 pound onion, about 1 large, chopped
  • ½ pound tomatoes, about 3 large plum, chopped
  • 2 ounces serrano chiles, about 3, chopped (seeded for less heat)
  • 3 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 heaping tablespoon onion powder
  • 2 ½ teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 heaping tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 large bunch cilantro
  • ¼ cup plus 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • Salt
  • Mexican hot sauce, preferably Tapatío

Step 1Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat until hot. Add enough oil to generously coat the bottom. When the oil is hot, add the ground beef. Sear the ground beef, constantly stirring until it is browned on all sides.

Step 2Reduce the heat slightly and stir in the onion, then the tomatoes and chiles. Add the paprika, onion powder, cayenne pepper and garlic powder, stirring until evenly combined. Simmer until the vegetables are softened and the tomatoes have reduced to sauce. Stir in the lime juice and cilantro and simmer a few minutes longer, until the pan juices have thickened. Stir in the salt and hot sauce to taste. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. Cover and refrigerate if not using immediately, and reheat before serving. This makes about 5 cups picadillo.

Escabeche

  • 3 to 4 tablespoons oil
  • 15 serrano chiles
  • 2 carrots, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
  • 15 garlic cloves
  • 1 white onion, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf

Step 1In a heavy-bottom pot, add enough oil to coat the bottom and heat over medium-high heat until hot. Add the chiles, heating until lightly blistered on all sides, about 2 minutes. Stir in the carrots, sweating until brightly colored, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the garlic, cooking until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the onions, stirring just until softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the water, then the vinegar, along with the oregano and bay leaf. Gently simmer until the carrots are tender but not too soft.

Step 2Strain the liquid and cool the vegetables, then cover and refrigerate until needed. This makes a scant quart escabeche. Finely chop the escabeche before adding to the nachos.

Cheese sauce

  • 1 stick (½ cup) butter
  • 2 ounces serrano chiles, about 3, roughly chopped
  • 4 ounces white onion, about ¼ large, roughly chopped
  • 4 ounces rice flour
  • 1 quart milk
  • 4 ounces pepper-jack cheese, grated
  • 4 ounces cheddar cheese, grated
  • Salt

Step 1In a heavy pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the chiles and onion and cook until soft and translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the rice flour and continue to cook, frequently stirring, for 10 minutes to cook out the raw flour taste. Slowly whisk in the milk to avoid lumps, and gently simmer the sauce until it thickens, 10 to 12 minutes. Add the cheeses, stirring until they melt.

Step 2Using an immersion blender, or in a stand blender, purée the sauce. Strain, discarding any bits of vegetable. Season with salt to taste. This makes a scant 1 ½ quarts cheese sauce. Cover and refrigerate if not using immediately. Rewarm before serving.

Street salsa

  • 1½ pounds tomatillos, husks removed
  • 1 small red onion, cut into thick slices
  • Cloves from 1 head garlic
  • 2 large serrano chiles, or more to taste
  • Oil
  • 4 large avocados
  • Juice from 1 lime, or more to taste
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 small bunch cilantro
  • Salt and pepper

Step 1In a large bowl, toss the tomatillos, onion slices, garlic cloves and chiles with enough oil to lightly coat.

Step 2Heat a griddle over medium-high heat until hot. Add the vegetables and griddle until charred on all sides. Remove from heat and place in a deep container or non-reactive pot.

Step 3To the container, add the avocado pulp, lime juice, water and cilantro. Blend the ingredients using an immersion blender, or in batches using a tabletop blender. Taste and adjust the flavorings and seasonings if desired. This makes a scant 2 quarts salsa. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Pico de gallo

  • 1 pound plum tomatoes, diced
  • 4 ounces finely diced red onion, from about ½ onion
  • 2 ounces serrano chiles, about 3, finely diced
  • 1 small bunch cilantro, chopped
  • ¼ cup lime juice, or to taste
  • Salt

Step 1In a nonreactive bowl, toss together the tomatoes, onion, chiles, cilantro, lime juice and a scant teaspoon salt, or to taste.

Nachos

  • Tortilla chips
  • Prepared pinto beans
  • Prepared picadillo
  • Prepared escabeche
  • Prepared cheese sauce
  • Prepared street salsa
  • Prepared pico de gallo
  • Chopped cilantro, for garnish

Step 1On a large platter, assemble the nachos, alternating the chips with dollops or spoonfuls of each of the toppings, and layering to make a nice mound. Garnish with cilantro before serving.

Each of 16 servings:
Calories 893; Protein 30 grams; Carbohydrates 87 grams; Fiber 18 grams; Fat 51 grams; Saturated fat 14 grams; Cholesterol 74 mg; Sugar 10 grams; Sodium 360 mg
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