Named after Louis, as in Prima, these nachos are at the intersection where Tex-Mex meets Trapani, as in Sicily. The Prima family traveled from Trapani, Sicily to the Quarter where their musical son first cut his teeth on the club scene. You can cut yours on these easy Italian-style nachos that are extremely fast to make.
Nachos’ Tex-Mex origin comes from just over the border in Piedras Negras (which technically makes it Mex-Mex but we’ll ignore that for the moment). They were whipped up by Ignacio (Nacho) Anaya for some hungry military wives from Fort Duncan back during World War II and his original creation consisted only of chips, cheese, and jalapenos. It was an instant hit and cooks have been tweaking it with added ingredients ever since.
Prep and Assembly
I like to keep the add-ons to some kind of reasonable number leaving the “super loaded” specials for sports bars with fully staffed kitchens. Shooting here for tasty but simple.
To start you’ll just shake out that bag a’ chips onto a cookie sheet or cast-iron skillet. Next, you’ll cook up the sausage, warm up the refried beans, add the tomato, onion, olives & fontina, broil and attack!
I use refried beans since bean beans tend to fall off the nacho. As you can see in the picture below I added a couple of tablespoons of a chicken broth reduction to make them a little bit easier to put on the chips. If you don’t have broth just thin with some water.
Fontina cheese is used because it’s Italian and melts better than anything except Velveeta (but tastes a lot better than V.) If you don’t have it Pepper Jack or Colby works well. After the sausage is cooked you can move it to the side of the pan and warm the refried beans. Then get all the toppings together and start building the nachos.
Always put the beans and meat on first and add the others as you like not forgetting to add the cheese last.
Ready to go under the broiler:
The best part is that if you’ve got the ingredients on hand and aren’t photographing it like I am here it should take about 15 minutes start to finish.
If you’re having a party and need more finger food try:
And to quote Louis, there is no “Basta Basta” to these guys so assemble and enjoy!
- Tortilla Chips
- 1 lb. hot Italian bulk sausage
- 1 cup refried beans, slightly thinned
- ½ cup sliced black olives
- ½ cup chopped tomatoes
- ¼ cup sliced green onion tops
- Thinly sliced chilies to taste
- ½ cup grated Fontina cheese
- Spread chips out on a cookie sheet or cast-iron skillet.
- Cook sausage over medium heat until browned. Depending on how fatty the sausage is you may have to add a little olive oil.
- Once the sausage is done, cut the heat, move it over to the side of the pan and add the refried beans to warm.
- To assemble start with the refried beans, then add the sausage, and finish with the olives, tomatoes, green onion tops, and sliced chilies.
- Top with the grated cheese and run under the broiler until the cheese is melted, then serve.