You’re tired of cooking, but your fridge is full of food. Every vacation host knows the dilemma. And there’s only a limited number of leftover plates you can microwave with the exact same flavors. A quick fix: Thanksgiving pan-fried nachos.
It’s a family tradition for Chef Amy Yi, Culinary Director of Genuine Foods and a classically trained chef who has worked in the kitchens of Jean-Georges, Upland and beyond.
“The day after Thanksgiving, my boyfriend’s family take his precious leftovers and cook some amazing nachos,” Yi says. “Everyone gathers around the stove while waiting for the end of the nachos, and the opportunity to gather around a meal is once again experienced.
Not only do you mess up only one large dish, but nachos provide a great time to relax, kick off your holiday film festival, or just stack some on a plate and retire to your own space. You do, because those leftover nachos are an invitation to gluttony and self-care.
“The neutral flavor of turkey meat is great for nachos because it pairs well with many other flavors,” says Yi. “Take care to layer well for the perfection of the nachos. Preparing two plates will help ensure that you have a backup when the first is devoured.
Of course, the recipe is flexible depending on what you have left on the fridge, but here is Yi’s opinion:
Leftover Thanksgiving Nachos
Serves: 6-8 people
1 pound of tortilla chips
1 lb leftover roasted turkey meat, grated (preferably dark meat)
4 cups of grated cheese (cheddar cheese, monterey jack, cotija cheese)
Pico de gallo
sliced green onions
Canned and drained beans
Sliced cherry tomatoes
Chopped fresh cilantro
Preheat oven to 350ºF and set up two half-sheet trays ready to assemble.
Divide the tortilla chips between two molds. Take ⅓ of the turkey meat and divide it between the two dishes on the fries. Follow with cheese. Top with a second layer of tortilla chips, pulled turkey, then cheese.
Slide the baking sheet into the oven to bake until the cheeses are melted, about 10 to 12 minutes.