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Author Notes: Tater tot nachos topped with cheese and quick pork chili verde. —Alexandra V. Jones
Serves 6 to 8
For the baked tater tots:
- 2 pounds (about 2 large) Russet potatoes
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 3 tablespoons peanut oil
- Place potatoes (skin and all, they are super easy to peel after boiling) in a pot of water, bring to a boil, and boil for 30 minutes (if your potatoes are small, check after half the time). Turn off the heat and let the potatoes sit in the water 10 to 15 minutes.
- Drain potatoes over a colander and run under cold water. Peel potatoes with your hands: The skin literally rubs off and there is very little wasted potato. Preheat oven to 450° F.
- When potatoes are cool, grate on the medium size hole of a box grater into a medium bowl. To the bowl add salt, pepper, and parsley and combine with hands. The natural starch in the potatoes will hold the mix together. When well blended, shape into “tots.” I used about 1 1/2 teaspoon of the mixture for each tot, but I stopped measuring halfway through and eyeballed the rest.
- Place peanut oil on a Silpat- or parchment-lined half sheet pan, place in oven for a minute or two. Place the tots on the hot pan, then bake 15 minutes, turn the tots, and bake another 15. They should be golden brown and crunchy.
For the chili verde and nacho béchamel:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 pound ground pork (substitute ground chicken if you prefer)
- 1 small can green chilies
- 1/2 medium onion, diced
- 3 tomatillos, husked and cut in half
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/4 cup chicken stock
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 1/4 cups milk
- 1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 to 2 tablespoons pickled jalapeños, depending on heat preference
- 1 pinch salt
- 2 tablespoons sour cream, for garnish
- 1/2 tablespoon piment d'espelette, for garnish
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro, for garnish
- Start by making the chili verde: Add olive oil to a skillet and brown the ground pork over medium-high heat, until golden.
- In a blender or processor, add green chilies, onion, tomatillos, and garlic. Blend until you form a thick salsa, then add to pork, cook until bubbly, add stock, reduce heat to medium-low, and let simmer for 20 minutes, frequently stirring and add salt and pepper to taste. While it simmers, prepare béchamel.
- Make béchamel by heating butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add flour then stir and cook for about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and slowly whisk in milk, cooking until thick and bubbly.
- Add 1/2 cup cheddar and the Parmesan, stir until melted, then add jalapeños. Check for salt and add a pinch if needed. Turn heat down to low.
- Preheat broiler. Place baked tater tots on a broiler-safe tray or platter, drizzle béchamel over the top, add chili verde, and top with 1 cup remaining shredded cheddar. Broil until golden.
- Top with sour cream and sprinkle with piment d'espelette and cilantro. Enjoy this with cerveza while watching football with friends.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!