Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Carnita Nachos

My husband and I have a decided weakness for Latin American flavors. In fact, our favorite taqueria, El Taco Loco, is less than three blocks away. This is a dangerous place for our budget to live. ;)

We love carnitas, anything choriqueso, tortas...tamales...mmmm....what was I typing about again?

We could easily eat at El Taco Loco EVERY night and never get bored with the food. However, we simply can't afford to take all six of us out to dinner every night, no matter how inexpensive El Taco Loco's menu is!

That means that I needed to learn how to make some yummy craving satisfying food in less time than it would take to pack up the kiddos and walk the three blocks to authentic flavor heaven.

 One of the laziest easiest ways for me to bring the flavors to life is in the form of a pork roast. I buy a good sized pork roast (NOT loin) and toss it in the slow cooker with onion and garlic until it's done. Everything in the crockpot gets dumped into a Tupperware container and stored in the fridge. We could eat part of the roast as a meal with carrots and potatoes and we do sometimes but sometimes I just want the meat made ahead for other meals.

Last week, I made Carnita Nachos. We had an opened bag of tortilla chips that needed to be used before they were stale. I was feeling particularly lazy and didn't want to spend more than a few minutes at the stove.

I took a bowl full of cooked roast and cut it into bite sized pieces. I tossed the meat into a pan with salt, cumin, and chili powder and cooked it until it was heated through and crispy chewy. The reason I don't use loin in this recipe is the lack of fat content. I don't want to have to add fat to fry the meat so I use the naturally more fatty cuts to save time.
My cute spice containers
Repurposed Parmesan lid

I layered tortilla chips onto my baking sheets, added cheese and cooked pork for the big kids,

green peppers and pork and leftover choriqueso for my husband, and lots of red onion and green pepper and leftover choriqueso and pork to mine.

 Our toddler doesn't chew tortilla chips very well yet so her nachos are made on whatever random crackers that we have in the house. That way she can eat the same thing that we do but it's not a choking hazzard.

The trays of nachos were popped into the oven at 400 until the cheese was bubbly. I served them with our usual taco night choices. Homemade salsa and rotel, guacamole, lime juice, and sour cream.

  My taste buds were quite content by the end of the meal. That only used about a quarter of the roast. Stay tuned for more recipes!

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