Chorizo Chili Potato Chip Nachos with Homemade American Cheese

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 7 hr 35 min (includes chilling time)
  • Active: 1 hr 35 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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Ingredients

Vegetable oil, for frying

8 Kennebec or other white potatoes, skin on

2 red bell peppers, charred, stemmed, skinned and chopped 

1 jalapeno, stemmed and chopped 

2 red onions, thinly sliced 

Olive oil, for cooking

Two 9-ounce tubes Mexican pork chorizo 

1 teaspoon chili powder 

1 teaspoon ground cumin 

1 teaspoon smoked paprika 

1 cup vinegar 

1 tablespoon salt 

1 tablespoon sugar 

Homemade American Cheese, recipe follows

Leaves from 1 bunch fresh cilantro 

1 cup sour cream 

Homemade American Cheese:

8 ounces firm, solid mild Cheddar, finely grated

8 ounces firm, solid low-moisture mozzarella, finely grated 

4 tablespoons tapioca flour 

2 teaspoons kosher salt 

2 ounces melted unsalted butter 

1/2 cup strong beer 

1/2 cup milk 

Directions

Special equipment:
a deep-fryer; a mandoline
  1. Bring oil to 350 degrees F in a deep-fryer. Slice the potatoes thin on a mandoline. Run under cold water until the water is clean. Fry until crispy.
  2. Saute the bell peppers, jalapeno and half the red onions in olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat until the onion is translucent. Add the chorizo, chili powder, cumin and paprika, then reduce heat to medium and cook until the chorizo cooks through. Transfer to a food processor and blend.
  3. Combine the vinegar, salt, sugar and remaining onions in a small saucepot and bring to a boil. Strain.
  4. Layer the Homemade American Cheese over the chips. Top with hot chili to melt. Top with cilantro, sour cream and pickled onions and serve.

Homemade American Cheese:

  1. Line a 8 1/2-by-4 1/2-by-2 3/4-inch-deep loaf pan with plastic wrap.
  2. Combine the Cheddar, mozzarella, tapioca flour and salt in a food processor and pulse to combine.
  3. Combine the butter, beer and milk in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from the heat and slowly pour the hot liquid into the cheese, processing until fully melted and smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids). Spoon the mixture into the prepared loaf pan, spreading it evenly (it should fill three-quarters of the loaf pan). Let stand in the refrigerator until the cheese sets, 4 to 6 hours. Invert the pan on a cutting board to remove the cheese and peel off the plastic wrap. Cut crosswise into 16 slices.