Ball Park Jalapeno Nachos
If you've ever wondered how to make the cheese sauce that accompanies a few handfuls of tortilla chips at countless movies theaters and sport venues, then look no further. You don't have to melt down a block of fake cheese to make your own version. Instead try my cheddar bechamel with jalapeños.
I decided to share this with you today in anticipation of the Superbowl this weekend between the Steelers and the Cardinals. I have to admit that I hate football. It's definitely not part of French culture. To be fair, I've never really taken the time to listen to my hubby's countless attempts to explain the rules of the game. It's so cute when he tries! At least I can get excited about the food...
Note: I originally posted this recipe beofre the Superbowl weekend.
Yields: 4 servings2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 whole fresh jalapeno pepper
¼ cup all purpose flour
1-¼ cups milk, warm
5 ounces sharp cheddar cheese
¼ teaspoon paprika powder
¼ teaspoon chili powder, (optional)
¼ teaspoon fleur de sel
½ teaspoon Tabasco sauce
2 tablespoons pickled jalapeno pepper, drained, sliced
1 handful white corn tortilla chips
1 handful blue corn tortilla chips with sesame
The jalapeño cheese sauce for these Nachos follows the same procedure as the sauce used in making Mac N Cheese.
In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium low heat. Add the fresh sliced jalapeños . Turn off the heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Remove the jalapeños from the pan and set aside on a plate. Bring the heat back up to medium high (it should be hot and golden). Add the flour. Keep stirring with a whisk for approximately 2-3 minutes. The flour should absorb the butter and form a paste. Add the milk in 3 stages. Increase the heat while constantly stirring for about 5 minutes. Lower the heat to low. Add salt, paprika, chili powder and Tabasco sauce. Mix, then add the cheddar cheese until molten. Add the sliced fried and pickled jalapeno peppers.
Line a plate with parchment paper (to prevent the cheese sauce from sticking to the plate for easier clean up) or use a wax-coated paper plate. Spread a combination of both tortilla chips in the platter. Pour the cheese sauce over the tortilla chips.
I used the "O" organic tortilla chip brand from Safeway. They're very good.
You can substitute any other cheese that melts in place of the cheddar but you won't get the same bright yellow color. The addition of paprika and cayenne powders helps accent the color.
The Nacho cheese sauce will have a pleasant jalapeno flavor thanks to the jalapeno infused butter.
To get a homogenous sauce, I always use all the ingredients at the same temperature so make sure you heat the milk in the microwave so it's warm. If you get lumpy pieces, do not hesitate to use a handheld-blender.
If your guests are too preoccupied with the game and the cheese cools and sets, you can always toss it in the microwave on HIGH for 1 to 1-½ minutes.Published By: on January 30, 2009.