People. Totchos are a thing. And not just any old thing. They’re tater tot nachos. I MEAN.
I am a huge — and hugely geeky — fan of the portmanteau. No no, don’t leave just yet. A portmanteau is a word combining the sounds and meanings of two other words. Brunch. Motel. More recently, podcast. (iPod and broadcast…am I the only one that hadn’t quite connected that?) Even MORE recently, totchos. Tater tot nachos! I imagine there was some effort to cram tater tots, nachos, and totally friggin’ ridiculous all together into the name of this dish, but something had to give, and really, the totally friggin’ ridiculous is so obviously implied.
That’s the main reason we had them for dinner the other day. The secondary reason is that I was getting a little too much of a kick out of calling myself Totcho Mama until the kids really couldn’t handle me for one second more.
Tater tots are kind of a dream come true and also kind of a nightmare. They don’t really fit into my food philosophy in any sensible way. Yet a few months ago I bought a bag of organic ones at Whole Foods in a moment of weakness. Organic fixes one of like thirteen problems with tater tots, but that was good enough for me. And I’ll tell ya what I’ve learned. Once you buy your first package of organic tater tots, it’s only a matter of time until you’re buying the two-pound bag, slathering them with nacho toppings, and calling it a pretty good day.
This recipe takes about three minutes more to make than the tater tots take to cook. Prep all the toppings while the tots are in the oven, and heap everything onto a serving plate as soon as they’re done.
I think we can, and probably should, agree that this dish makes a more appropriate game day appetizer or party platter (March Madness, anyone?) than it does family dinner. But I suspect we can also agree that sometimes a little fact like that isn’t gonna stop anyone. Nor should it.
That’s all for today. Talk to you soon.
Totchos (Tater Tot Nachos)
- 32 ounces tater tots
- 6 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded
- 4 ounces sour cream
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 medium tomatoes, chopped and drained on paper towels
- 4 ounce can sliced black olives, drained
- 1/4 cup minced red onion
- 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro leaves
- Pickled jalapeño slices, drained, to taste (I only used a few and minced them)
Bake tater tots according to package directions. In the last minute of baking, sprinkle on about 2/3 of the cheese so it melts.
Heap cheesy tots onto a serving plate. In a small bowl, mix together the sour cream, onion powder and salt. Spoon over tater tots. Top with tomatoes, olives, onion, cilantro, jalapeño and remaining cheese. Serve immediately.
APPS & SNACKS INCOMING: