Super Nachos with Butternut Queso
For the Butternut Queso:
- 1 small to medium butternut squash, peeled and chopped
- Extra virgin olive oil ( EVOO), for drizzling
- Salt and pepper
- 1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin (1/3 palmful)
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander (1/3 palmful)
- 1 rounded tablespoon seeded pureéd chipotle in adobo (purée the entire can and freeze remainder)
- 1 cup vegetable or chicken stock
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- Freshly grated nutmeg, to taste
- 1 1/2 cups shredded extra-sharp yellow cheddar cheese
For the nachos:
- 1 can spicy vegetarian refried beans
- 1 bag good-quality tortilla chips, such as blue corn, multi-grain or flax seed
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed (14 ounces)
- Drained pickled jalapeño slices
- Diced seeded tomatoes
- Finely chopped red onion
- Chopped cilantro
- Diced avocado, dressed with lemon or lime juice
Pre-heat the oven to 425°F.
Drizzle the squash with EVOO, salt and pepper and roast for 20-25 minutes, until golden and tender.
While the squash roasts, in a medium size pot, sauté the carrot, onion and garlic in a little EVOO over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper, cumin and coriander. Cook for 10-12 minutes, until tender. Scrape into a food processor and add the chipotle puree and the roast squash along with the stock. Puree until very smooth and reserve.
Return the pot to stove and melt the butter. Whisk in the flour, cook for 1 minute, then whisk in the milk. Season with salt, pepper and a little nutmeg; melt in the cheese. Stir in the reserved vegetable puree and adjust the heat level and seasoning, to taste.
Switch on the broiler.
Heat the vegetarian refried beans with about 1/3 cup water to them out a little.
Arrange the chips in a casserole dish and dot with the thinned refried beans. Sprinkle with black beans and top with the butternut queso. (Note: You will have extra butternut queso. Thin it out with stock and enjoy as soup!) Broil until brown at the edges and the chips are crisp. Top with pickled jalapeños, tomatoes, onions, cilantro and avocado.
This is one of many “Yum-o!” recipes – it’s good and good for you. To find out more about Yum-o!, Rachael’s nonprofit organization, go to www.yum-o.org.