Oh hey! It’s been a while, right? There’s been a whole lot going on that I will definitely write about at some point, but for now I just wanted to share something I made a few weeks back. It’s food. Of course it’s food. It’s Carnitas Nachos with super easy guacamole. Basically, I was invited by The Ideas Kitchen to try out one of the recipes on their new (awesome) site and, well. Once I saw it was guacamole I was racing to the shop faster than 2017’s summer has disappeared beyond the horizon.
Because, come on. Guacamole. Or, as my mother-in-law memorably called it once, “that green stuff”. Good guac is one of the absolute best things ever.
The Ideas Kitchen’s food processor guacamole recipe is a dream of a whizz. Yes, it’s made for food processors, and I know what you’re thinking. “Surely it’s easier to just mash up the avocado with a fork and mix the other stuff in?!” Well, maybe. But, actually. no. I’ve always made my guacamole that way and let me tell you: chucking everything in the food processor and giving it a few pulses is way easier.
Seriously, though. When you’ve got a food processor involved there’s no need to try to chop everything neatly. Just sling it in and give it a few buzzes. Perfect texture. Perfect thickness. Mmm. I’m so grateful to The Idea’s Kitchen for this. (FYI: they have loads of neat recipes over on their site – as well as the food processor recipes there are blender and bread maker recipes too that look FAB).
And the proportions in this guac recipe are pretty perfect, too. I normally make my own up, slinging whatever in and coming to okay-ness by trial and error. So following a recipe that resulted in perfection was quite the eye-opener! However I DID leave out the coriander and the olive oil, because two avocados is enough rich and tasty fats for me. But it was great. GREAT.
decided to team my guacamole and nachos with a tried and tested recipe of mine that produces the darn tastiest pig product you ever did put on a fork – carnitas. I wrote about them years ago here, but only briefly. Carnitas are the marriage of pork and orange and spices and low slow cooking. It’s such a beautiful dish – so many flavours! Such MEAT. Even when cutting out a lot of extraneous fat and sugar, it’s still beyond tasty.
We normally eat carnitas with tacos, but guess what? Yep, turns out they’re even better when turned into Carnitas Nachos! Carnitas layered with nachos and cheese and mango and tomatoes and jalapeños and that creamy, delicious guac. Layered, and then baked in the oven until the cheese melts and the nachos crisp up. Carnitas nachos are amazing.
To be fair, this dinner would’ve been fab enough as just the guacamole and the nachos, but the carnitas nachos really kicked it up to 11. A big plate of nachos stinking with cheese and guacamole and sour cream is one of my very favourite meals as it is. Adding delicious pork to that? Ooh, baby.
The carnitas nachos recipe is below. Don’t be put off by the length – the long cooking time is mainly down to the slow cooking of the pork. You can basically chuck it in on Saturday morning, then come back later that day and prep the best weekend dinner you’ll ever have. You can click on any of the links above to get to the guacamole recipe. And you should. You should you should you should.
Carnitas Nachos Bake
An indulgent mix of crispy nachos, succulent and spicy slow cooked pork carnitas, creamy guacamole, tart mangos, hot jalapeños and sweet tomatoes, all smothered in melted cheese and baked together.
- Prep Time 40 minutes
- Cook Time 6 hours
- Total Time 6 hours 40 minutes
- Servings 3
FOR THE CARNITAS
- 4 pork loin steaks fat removed
- 2 oranges juiced
- 2 limes juiced
- 200 ml chicken stock
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
SPICE BLEND 1
- 1 tsp garlic granules
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp salt
SPICE BLEND 2
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp garlic granules
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 3 garlic cloves crushed
FOR THE NACHOS
- 200 g cheddar cheese grated
- 1 mango diced
- 5 spring onions sliced
- handful cherry tomatoes quartered / halved
- 2 tbsp sliced jalapenos
- 1/2 portion guacamole (from linked recipe)
- 3 tbsp sour cream
- 1 bag nachos
- Prepare both spice blends. Mix the spices for Spice Blend 1 in a shallow bowl, and mix the ingredients for Spice Blend 2 in another bowl. Set Spice Blend 2 aside.
- Add the pork steaks one at a time to Spice Blend 1 and coat on both sides. Set the steaks aside.
- Heat a frying pan to a high heat and add 1 tbsp of your favourite oil. When sizzling, add the pork steaks and cook for 30 secs – 1 min on each side until well browned. Move the steaks directly to the slow cooker.
- Add the stock, tomato puree, garlic cloves, and Spice Mix 2 to the frying pan and deglaze. Really scrape up any burnt or charred bits of pork or spices. Let the liquid simmer for 2 mins, then add the citrus juices and pour over the pork in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on Low for 5 hours.
- After 5 hours remove the pork steaks from the slow cooker and use two forks to shred to pieces. They should be tender and flake easily. Add the shredded pork to a bowl and spoon in a ladleful or so of the cooking liquid. Leave to sit whilst preparing the rest of the ingredients for the nachos.
- Preheat the oven to 200C (fan 180C). Make the guacamole as per the linked recipe and prep the remaining nachos ingredients.
- In a large baking dish, scatter a thin layer of nachos. Drizzle over 1-2 tbsps of the liquid from the slow cooker, followed by a thin layer of the pork and a scattering of cheese. Add a light sprinkle of each of the mango, spring onions, tomatoes, and jalapeños. Repeat with layers of nachos, pork, cheese, and the trimmings as you wish, remembering to dollop spoonfuls of the guacamole as you go. When finished, scatter the remaining cheese over the top and bake in the oven for 15-20 mins, until the cheese is fully melted and the tips of the nachos are starting to crisp.
- Serve in bowls, or in the dish if you’re feeling lazy, with sour cream spooned in blobs on the top. DIG IN.