Last month one of my favorite blogger friends posted her recipe for a delicious chilaquile casserole, and that got me thinking and reminiscing about how I love chilaquiles.
Years ago, my older sister and I used to go for breakfast at a Mexican restaurant in Montrose, an area of Houston known for being eclectic and seedy and, somehow, at the very same time, trendy. Or maybe trendy came later. There was certainly a whole lot of eclectic and seedy going on. This was a very long time ago. Now you hardly ever have to step over drunks sleeping it off in doorways and unsightly puddles of who knows what on the way to breakfast in Montrose. The restaurant was in an old wood-framed house that had been added on to and extended to accommodate more and more patrons over the years. Even on a weekday morning, there were plenty of people enjoying the breakfast menu. I’m not sure that some of them weren’t still there from the night before, to be honest, since it was open 24 hours. Yeah, that kind of joint. There were probably some lovely things on the menu but I really couldn’t tell you because I always ordered the chilaquiles. Their version was like my favorite huevos rancheros, that is to say, scrambled eggs with tomatoes and onions and jalapeños, but with crunchy corn tortillas and cheese. Always a winning combination.
According to my non-extensive research, read lazy, chilaquiles were created as a way to use up stale corn tortillas but I’d call them reason enough to rush out and buy some fresh ones too. Those tortillas add crunch and flavor, and if you are grasping for a healthy attribute, I’m guessing fiber. But don’t quote me on that.
Ingredients to feed two
4 soft corn tortillas - we are not talking about chips here
2 2/3 oz or 75g extra sharp cheddar
Canola or other light oil
Leftover meat – optional – shrimp, chicken, beef, pork, it’s all good. Or try refried beans!
1 cup or 240ml spicy tomato-based picante sauce or salsa plus extra for serving
Optional for serving – avocado and green onions or cilantro. Some people even put sour cream.
Cut your tortillas in triangles and beat your eggs in a small bowl. Grate your cheese and set it aside. Cut your leftover meat into bite-sized pieces, if using.
|This was leftover grilled rump steak.|
Drizzle a little oil in a non-stick pan and fry the triangles until crispy. Remove and drain on some paper towels.
In that same pan, warm your leftover meat, and then push it to the sides and add the beaten eggs in the middle.
Stir frequently to break the eggs up into bite-sized pieces, mixing in the meat as you go. When the eggs are cooked to your satisfaction, remove them from the pan and set them aside, covered, on a plate.
Now add the tortillas back in to the pan and pour on the picante sauce.
Cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. You want fairly good coverage with the salsa, but keep some triangle corners dry so they are still crispy.
Add the scrambled eggs back in and stir well.
Top with grated cheddar and put the lid on so it melts.
Divide onto two plates and serve with sliced avocado, if desired, and more salsa.