Wednesday, August 22, 2012

not'cho average nacho: Greek Nachos

Greek food took me by surprise when I was about 22 years old. I had never had anything remotely Mediterranean in my life (pizza and spaghetti not included), when, one day, I stumbled upon Crazy Pita near my mom and dad's house in Henderson, NV. It was there that I first sampled warm-spiced roasted vegetable couscous, sharp Feta salad, flavorful Kefta skewers and, yes, even Hummus, served with a drizzle of olive oil on top with a sprinkle of paprika and warm pita bread on the side. 
This, I thought to myself, is heaven. 

Now Greek food is a weekly staple in my home, including homemade whole wheat pita bread, which I make in a double-batch, cook and freeze for quick lunches of pita sandwiches, pizzas, chips and more! But that's another post. 
 Today I want to share my recipe for Greek Nachos. These are a no-bake nacho using pita chips (homemade, store bought, or - my new-found Trader Joe's* favorite, Whole Wheat Lavash Chips, pictured) piled high with fiber-rich, protein-packed hummus, chopped veggies, a sprinkle of Feta and a drizzle of Greek dressing, also a TJ's* staple in my house. If you have any leftover chicken laying around, it goes great on top of this dish as well! I love to buy a rotisserie chicken from my grocery store at the beginning of the week, carve it up, and use it throughout the week to add protein to salads and nachos. They are super inexpensive, juicy and incredibly flavorful, and a huge time-saver to boot!

By the way, if you're wondering why on earth I am name-dropping all of my Trader Joe's-exclusive groceries, it's because, well, TJ's is my favorite store on the face of the planet. And the blog name doesn't call me a snob for nothing. I stop at a TJ's every single time I get the opportunity to stock up on our family's favorites, and at the top of that favorite's list is their Greek dressing. You can substitute homemade tzatziki sauce (when in doubt, go with Alton Brown. He's my culinary boyfriend), Ranch, other store-bough Greek, or even just a splash of oil and vinegar. 
Or come to my house and I'll give you a bottle. I have about 400 of them lining my pantry shelves.
Greek Nachos, baby!
This recipe is so simple- it makes a great lunch, or, with chicken (or whole chickpeas or white beans for extra protein) even a great, fast weeknight dinner! I have made this recipe a ton of different ways depending on what is in my fridge at the moment, too. I have topped it with roasted zucchini, squash and carrots, and then some crunchy romaine, I have made a cucumber/Feta/tomato/olive tapenade to sprinkle across the top -- any veggies you have will taste delicious with this. Also, I don't know about your kids, but mine love crunchy, fresh veggies, and they love nachos. They gobble this up! 

Whether you are a Mediterranean novice or an old pro, there is nothing better than a big pile of nachos with the flavors that I can't get enough of!

Greek Nachos
Serves: 4
Prep time: 10-20 minutes
  
Ingredients:
  • ·        1 bag pita chips, lavash chips, or 2 cups homemade pita chips
  • ·        1 1/5 cups Hummus, see below
  • ·        3 cups raw veggies, including cucumbers, olives, tomatoes, lettuce, jicama, carrots – the possibilities are endless!
  • ·        ¼ cup Feta Cheese
  • ·        ¼ cup Greek Dressing, preferably Trader Joe’s, or tzatziki sauce
On serving platter, arrange chips in a single layer. One by one, smear ½ tbs of hummus on each chip. Sprinkle cheese and veggies across the top. Top with lettuce lastly, if using, and drizzle lightly with dressing. Serve.

World’s Best Hummus 
 (adapted from Ina Garten)
Yield: 2 cups
Prep time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:
  •     4-5 garlic cloves
  •     1 can chickpeas, drained, liquid reserved
  •     1 to 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt (I cut the salt down to 1 tsp when making this recipe for                     nachos, as the chips are salted)
  •     1/3 cup tahini (sesame paste, found in the peanut butter or specialty aisle of the                      supermarket)
  •     6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
  •     2 tablespoons liquid from the chickpeas
  •     6-10 dashes hot sauce, depending on taste
Process garlic in food processor fitted with the steel blade until it's minced. Add the rest of the ingredients to the food processor and process until the hummus is coarsely pureed. Taste, for seasoning, and serve chilled or at room temperature.

2 comments:

  1. This looks amazing! We love a good hummus recipe. Must try this one!

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  2. Hi Mandy,
    Thank you for posting the Greek Nachos recipe.
    I’ve been looking for this recipe since forever! LOL. :D
    I’d like to invite you to submit the pictures of your Greek Nachos to http://www.foodporn.net so other chefs can make the same creation. :)
    You know it’s fun to make others hungry. :D
    Can’t wait for your recipe. :D

    ReplyDelete