Sunday, December 21, 2008

Taylor Court Nachos

Taylor Court Grocery is one of my favorite things about the neighborhood I live in.  It's run by a couple of Log Cabin Republicans, Errol and Mel.  They are the soul of an otherwise unremarkable, quiet Portland Neighborhood.   There are 3 aisles in about 500 sq feet of store, but that's not counting the walk-in beer cooler.  Their wine selection is crap, but they have a good variety of  fancy sodas, organic jams and dog treats. Taylor Ct has provided me with eggs, cheese, potatoes, celery, onions, garlic, carrots, avocado and apples when I've needed real ingredients.   And Kettle chips, Pepperidge Farms cakes (!),Smartfood and Good Humor bars when I haven't. Every time I walk in thinking they're not going to have something, I'm usually proven wrong.  This week it was a glue stick.  2 weeks ago, it was buttermilk.  Today I noticed that they have contact lens carriers and belgian waffles for sale. 

Errol and Mel naturally cultivated a collection of regulars of which my old boyfriend was among their favorites.  I know this now because the day I told Errol that Jeff had moved out, I got a look of utter disappointment that only my mother could have topped.  Jeff was a nice even-tempered Midwesterner with whom they could talk business or Blazers scores and who never outstayed his welcome.   His usual run was at about 7:40 (they close at 8) when the reality of a bare pantry had finally set in.  Jeff never tried to break me of my nacho obsession and developed this totally passable nacho 'recipe' with all Taylor Ct. ingredients.  

Taylor Court Nachos
aka Poor Man's Nachos 
1 bag corn chips (you won't use the whole bag)
1 can Nalley Vegetarian Chili*
8 oz Tillamook cheddar (any sharpness) or Monterey Jack cheese
Sour Cream
1/2 (or more) can El Pato Jalapeno Salsa or other jarred salsa 
Optional: scallions, avocado, fresh lettuce, onions or tomatoes.  

preheat oven to 375.  Use a 9x13 hotel pan or pyrex dish (or cookie sheet) and spread out your chips.  Heat chili on the stove before spreading it over the chips.  I also like to add a little salsa to the nachos before I put them in the oven.  Finish with cheese and bake for about 12 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbling.  After removing, dot with sour cream, more salsa and the optional fresh vegetables if you have them.  I really like the texture of shredded lettuce on my nachos, it gives them that "american taco" spin. Eat in front of the TV

*I am not a vegetarian but I do draw a line at canned meats

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