Vegan Nachos, with homemade salsa and guacamole

So I can’t say too much about this dish—what can anyone say about nachos, with salsa and guacamole? They’re great in a pinch, and you can eat this entire appetiser for two as dinner whilst you watch Mulder and Scully battle the unknown (which we’ve been doing a lot of lately).

I’m actually a huge fan of both the salsa and the guacamole recipes. They’re a little different than the bright red and bright green varieties, respectively, of which you might be thinking, which is why I think that you should give them a try. The salsa is a little spicy, and the roasted tomatoes add a nice smokiness to the mix. The guacamole is fresh and will get licked off the spoon/dish faster than it can end up on the nachos.

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You can throw whatever vegan cheese on here that you please—I’ve found that Daiya melts pleasantly all over these delicious nachos, but if you’re in the mood instead to make your own cheese, or use Sheese, or nothing at all, then by all means, be my guest.

So grab some simple ingredients, blend and mix them together, and then pile them on top of corn chips. Done!

Serves: 4 as an appetiser

Ingredients: 

For the salsa:

2 tomatoes on the vine 

2 cloves garlic, sliced 

1 Anaheim chilli, seeded and sliced into thirds 

4 green chillies, chopped 

1-3 jalapeños, seeded and sliced in half 

1/2 a small onion, sliced 

1/4 c cilantro leaves, freshly picked 

1 t olive oil 

juice of half a lime 

salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste 

For the guacamole:

2 cloves garlic, sliced 

(other) 1/2 a small onion, sliced 

2 large serrano chillies, seeded and chopped 

1/2 c cilantro leaves, freshly picked 

flesh of 1 large ripe avocado 

juice of (other) half a lime 

pinch salt 

For the nachos:

few handfuls corn tortilla chips 

1 can (~2 c) black beans, drained and rinsed 

handful Daiya mozzarella style shreds 

sprinkle cilantro leave, freshly picked 

Method:
Preheat the oven to 350ºF.

For the salsa, you’re going to need to roast some tomatoes. I suppose that this is optional, but the fire-roasted tomatoes will impart this lovely flavour into your salsa. It’s kind of a bitch if you don’t have a gas stove, though, so really, you’re going to have to go out and get a gas stove.

To roast the tomatoes, cut the vine such that each tomato has a few inches of vine attached to it. Using tongs, hold the tomato above a flame until the skin starts to bubble and peel, making sure to rotate the tomato such that all the skin is exposed to the flame. Set the first tomato on a cutting board or plate and roast the second tomato.

fire-roasted tomato

Once the tomatoes are cool enough to handle, carefully peel the skin off. It should come right off, and you can discard it. Use a knife to cut a cone into the top of the tomatoes and remove the vine and seeds. Cut them in half and deseed them.

In the work bowl of a food processor, add the garlic and chillies and roughly chop. Add the onion and chop a little more. Then add the tomatoes, cilantro, olive oil, and lime juice and blend until the salsa is mixed, but still a little chunky.

Scoop into a bowl and salt and pepper to taste. (You can eat this with tortilla chips as you make the guacamole and nachos!)

salsa verde

For the guacamole, in the processor, add the garlic, onion, chilli, and cilantro and pulse to combine. I like mine a little thick, but you could make it smoother if you like.

In a bowl, smash the avocado flesh until broken down and add the lime juice (or be lazy like me and throw this in the food processor, too). The lime juice will slow the oxidation process that turns avocado flesh brown, just as lemon juice keeps apples from turning brown.

Add the mixture from the food processor and stir to combine. Salt to taste.

wicked delicious guacamole

For nachos, preheat the oven to 450ºF. On a ceramic or other baking sheet, spread a layer of tortilla chips. Spoon beans over the chips, then sprinkle with cheese. Bake until the cheese is melting and the chips are just turning golden.

Remove from the oven and spoon salsa and guacamole over the nachos. Garnish with cilantro and serve!

Garnishes: cilantro leaves, lime wedges, or even some chopped scallions
Goes well with: a nice light lager or pale ale, some empanadas, and a warm night!

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