Before I talk about these awesome nachos, I want to discuss with you something very important involving spiders. So hold your appetite for one more minute and be patient with me.
Do you have an official spider killer in your house? I’m not exactly sure how I became the official spider killer since I don’t particularly like killing spiders. It might have to do with my likeness to cats (but that’s a different story for a different time). I think that I just fear them more than my husband and he knows this as fact. You see, either me or the kids usually see the spider and yell (naturally). It took me about four years to learn that he doesn’t react to things the way I do, usually. I often act without thinking, which can be both good and bad. I think about doing something for maybe a millisecond and then I do it; often without any sort of plan. He however, thinks.
He thinks a lot.
I yell “spider!” and he assesses the spider situation with a glance and then walks away and thinks out a game plan, then thinks about all the repercussions in the event the spider should ever actually be killed. He’ll then think about the best method for killing the spider to mitigate any wall mess that might occur. So about five minutes later he walks into the room with several props and stunning agents, perhaps a ladder and some paper towels.
The spider is dead, dude. It died about thirty seconds after I yelled if not ten.
These spiders aren’t city spiders. They’re big and gross and they move faster than anything I’ve ever seen before. It would’ve been gone by the time he even walked into the room had I not killed it and now I won’t bother him all night tossing and turning thinking there are spiders in the bed with me. You know, because I’m just a bit crazy. And I hate spiders. Sure, I had to clean my shoe…and the wall. But, the spider didn’t get away.
Priorities. Are you the official spider killer in your house? I’m curious.
Now, that we’ve discussed these important facts, I’d like to also note that the moment our son got on the bus for second grade yesterday, the temperature dropped ten degrees. It was awesome. Fall is in the air. It’s crisp, it’s cool, and we’re in the last moments before pumpkins and apples start to invade the Earth. Hold that thought for one more week, though. I haven’t used zucchini and yellow squash yet.
So, Trey was enjoying his first day at his new big kid school and Mike and Max and I were relaxing on a vacation day and enjoying the weather. We had some things leftover from the weekend at the farmer’s market and so I asked what they wanted for lunch under the condition that it use up some of the vegetables sitting around. This time he did not think because he already knew the answer as did I.
Farmer’s market nachos with peppadews to be specific. What are peppadews besides my newest love and obsession? They’re from south Africa and they offer some sweetness with a bit of kick. I picked them up at a stand at the market and I have used them in almost everything that would normally call for sweet bell peppers. They’re truly that good.
I chopped up some zucchini and yellow squash and one whole onion and a few peppadews. I cooked them down with a little seasoned tomato sauce and some green salsa for extra kick and I added some black beans for protein and richness. I had my nacho base.
I preheated the oven and lined my pan with parchment so I wouldn’t have to scrub later on. I dropped some chips down and spooned this all over them. Then I added some delicious sharp cheese that I also happened to pick up at the farmer’s market and I placed them in the preheated oven until melted and delicious. I plated them up and I dropped extra chopped peppadews all over the top along with some parsley and cilantro and a quick drop of sour cream over the top. They were devoured. The best part of this is that it’s almost making nachos healthy. Granted, I’m sure that depends on the ratio of chips and cheese to vegetable/bean topping. But, still, these are far better tasting and better for you than neon orange cheese dipping sauce for sure along with several other variations on nachos. I recommend using up any last garden or farmer’s market stock you might have on hand with these and the next time you see peppadews, don’t pass up the opportunity.
Gear up for pumpkins and apples because they’re back with a vengeance coming next week. For now, enjoy the end of summer.
Farmer’s Market Nachos
- 1 yellow squash, diced
- 1 zucchini, diced
- 1 white onion, diced
- 4 peppadew peppers, diced + 3-4 more for garnish
- 1 clove garlic, minced (optional)
- 1 16-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1/4 cup seasoned tomato sauce or purée
- green hot salsa, to taste
- salt and pepper, to taste
- tortilla chips (at least four cups)
- 1-2 cups extra sharp and tangy cheese of your choice
- added salsa, sour cream, cilantro, chives or scallions, and parsley for garnish (optional)
In a large shallow saucepan over very high heat, add squash, zucchini, onion, peppers and (if using it) garlic. Toss every few minutes and allow to cook until onions become soft. Note, don’t worry about the vegetables sticking because they will release once the tomato is added. Add beans, tomato sauce, and a bit of salsa. Stir and reduce heat to medium, allowing that to cook for a minute or two. Add salt and pepper to taste and add more salsa if needed. Once your nacho base is to your liking, remove from heat.
Preheat oven to 375°F. Place parchment inside a broiler pan for easy clean up and drop handfuls of tortilla chips onto parchment. Spoon nacho base all over chips and top nacho base with shredded sharp cheese of your choice. Cook in preheated oven for about eight minutes, or until cheese is melted. Remove from oven and place on six individual plates or one large platter and garnish with additional chopped peppadews, optional salsa, sour cream, cilantro or parsley, scallions or chives if desired.