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Vegan nachos

Who doesn't love a good towering platter of nachos with an obnoxious amount of toppings? This version of not-so-average nachos is a delicious combination of spice and textures, and no utensils are needed! This all-in-the-blender homemade Queso turns cashews into an explosively flavourful cheesy sauce that gets its depth from mild jalapenos, smoky chipotle chiles, and salt to counteract the cashews' sweetness. To keep in the vegan theme, these nachos feature walnut chorizo that delivers the same robust flavour and smoky edge, plus an on-point meaty texture. And don't forget the sauces! Make your own brazil nut sour cream to serve along with the nachos for a completely unforgettable dish. 

SERVES
2
 TO
3

Ingredients

Brazil Nut Sour Cream

  • 2 cups raw Brazil nuts, soaked and drained
  • 1 cup unsweetened, unflavoured plant-based milk
  • 3 tablespoons distilled white vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon fine pink salt, to taste

Walnut Chorizo

  • 2 dried guajillo chiles
  • 2 cups sun-dried tomatoes not packed in oil
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chile powder or chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons fine pink salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves (omit if using chili powder)
  • 1/2 white onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 cups walnut halves, lightly toasted
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Cashew Queso

  • 2 carrots, scrubbed and trimmed (no need to peel), coarsely chopped
  • 1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce
  • 1 jalapeño, stemmed and seeded, or 8 slices pickled jalapeño
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 cups unsweetened, unflavoured plant-based milk
  • 2 cups raw cashews, soaked and drained
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons fine pink Himalayan salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Zest and juice of 1 lime

To Serve

  • 1 (16-ounce) bag tortilla chips
  • 2 cups cooked beans (black, pinto, red, or chili beans, rinsed and drained, if canned), or refried beans, warmed
  • 2 cups Walnut Chorizo
  • 3 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 2 tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • Optional garnishes: Pickled jalapeños, pickled or fresh sliced red onion, chopped fresh cilantro, diced avocado and/or guacamole, Brazil Nut Sour Cream, grilled and diced pineapple, and sliced scallions (green and white parts)

Directions

Brazil Nut Sour Cream 

  1. Rub the soaked Brazil nuts between two clean kitchen towels to remove as much of the skins as you can, but don’t drive yourself crazy—Brazil nut skins are tough to remove, and the speckles in the sour cream add a nice natural touch. Discard the skins. 
  2. In a high-speed blender, combine the nuts, milk, vinegar, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, and salt.
  3. Cover and blend for about two minutes, or until super smooth and velvety.
  4. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until the sour cream firms up and is chilled throughout, one to two hours. Once chilled, you can use it immediately or store it in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Walnut Chorizo

  1. Combine the guajillo chiles and sun-dried tomatoes in a medium heatproof bowl. Pour enough boiling water over to cover the peppers and tomatoes and soak for 15 minutes to rehydrate. 
  2. Drain well. Remove the stem and seeds from the peppers and discard them. Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the ancho chile powder, salt, cumin, paprika, oregano, black pepper, cinnamon, and cloves (if using); set aside.
  4. In a food processor, combine the soaked peppers and sun-dried tomatoes, onion, and garlic; pulse until coarsely chopped. Add the spice mixture, walnuts, and vinegar. Pulse until well combined, scraping the bowl as needed. Set aside for nachos. You can also store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. Walnut Chorizo can be used cold or warm.

Cashew Queso 

  1. In a high-speed blender, combine the carrots, chipotle chile, jalapeño, garlic, milk, cashews, nutritional yeast, onion powder, paprika, salt, cumin, garlic powder, chilli powder, turmeric, and black pepper. Blend on high until completely smooth and the exterior of the blender is warm for two to three minutes. 
  2. Add the lime zest and juice and blend for 10 seconds. Taste for consistency and flavour. Adjust the seasoning, if necessary.
  3. Set aside for nachos. You can also store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week, or in the freezer for up to six months. 

To Serve 

  1. Arrange half of the tortilla chips on a large sheet pan or platter. Top with half of the queso, beans, and Walnut Chorizo. Add the remaining tortilla chips, beans, Walnut Chorizo, and queso. 
  2. Top with the lettuce, tomato, and any garnishes (if using). Serve immediately. Enjoy!


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