In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, onion, jalapeño, coriander, and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper.
STUFF FOR BEEF
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 packet beef mince
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
Hot sauce to taste
MAKE THE BEEF
In a large skillet or frying pan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add the beef mince and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until no pink remains, for about 6 minutes. Drain excess fat, then add garlic, cumin, paprika, and hot sauce. Cook, stirring until fragrant for about 1 minute more. Remove from the heat and set aside.
STUFF FOR CHEESE SAUCE
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp plain flour
2 cups milk
Mountain of grated cheddar
MAKE THE CHEESE SAUCE
In a medium pot, melt butter over medium heat. Add flour and stir until an even paste has formed. Slowly stir in milk, then continue to cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until thickened. Add cheese and stir in until melted. Taste, and decide you need to add more cheese. Stir. Add even more cheese. Season with salt, pepper and more hot sauce, if you like.
STUFF FOR ASSEMBLY
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
Biggest bag of thick tortilla chips you could find
More grated cheddar
So much sour cream
As much Guacamole as you can afford
ASSEMBLE THE NACHOS
Choose your assembly container wisely and according to the size of your eyes – a big bowl is good, a small bucket is best. Spread a thin layer of cheese sauce around the container. Using a ¼ of the tortilla chips, spread an even layer of chips over the cheese sauce. Top with ⅓ of the remaining cheese sauce, ⅓ of the cooked beef, ⅓ of the black beans, ⅓ of the grated cheese, ⅓ of the remaining pico de gallo, and ⅓ of the remaining sour cream. Drizzle with hot sauce.
Repeat layering the chips, cheese sauce, beef, black beans, grated cheese, pico de gallo and sour cream twice more, then chuck the remaining nacho chips on top.
Place a dinner plate on top of the container and carefully flip over. Slowly reveal your inhumane creation, the Unholy Tower of Beef and Cheese. Top the nacho tower with any bits you have left – sour cream, pico de gallo, grated cheese etc. Drizzle with hot sauce, add a bit of coriander and a dollop or two of guacamole.
Cross your heart and hope to die. Tuck in.
DIABOLICALLY TASTY CARBONARA
Serve with cheesy garlic bread for an authentic Italian carb overload.
50g pecorino cheese
3 large eggs
2 plump garlic cloves, peeled and left whole
50g unsalted butter
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Put a large saucepan of water on to boil. Finely chop the 100g pancetta, having first removed any rind. Squash 2 peeled plump garlic cloves with the blade of a knife, just to bruise it. Set aside.
Beat the 3 large eggs in a medium bowl and season with a little freshly grated black pepper. Finely grate 50g pecorino cheese and 50g parmesan and mix them together. Mix most of the cheese in with the eggs, keeping a small handful back for sprinkling over later. Set aside.
Add 1 tsp salt to the boiling water, add 350g spaghetti and when the water comes back to the boil, cook at a constant simmer, covered, for 10 minutes or until al dente (just cooked).
While the spaghetti is cooking, fry the pancetta with the garlic. Drop 50g unsalted butter into a large frying pan or wok and, as soon as the butter has melted, tip in the pancetta and garlic.
Leave to cook on a medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring often, until the pancetta is golden and crisp. The garlic has now imparted its flavour, so take it out with a slotted spoon and discard.
Keep the heat under the pancetta on low. When the pasta is ready, lift it from the water with a pasta fork or tongs and put it in the frying pan with the pancetta. Don’t worry if a little water drops in the pan as well (you want this to happen) and don’t throw the pasta water away yet.
Take the pan of spaghetti and pancetta off the heat. Now quickly pour in the eggs and cheese. Using the tongs or a long fork, lift up the spaghetti so it mixes easily and evenly with the egg mixture. It should thicken but not scramble.
When everything is coated, add a few tablespoons of the extra pasta cooking water to keep it saucy. You don’t want it wet, just moist. Season with a little salt, if needed.
Use a long-pronged fork to twist the pasta on to the serving plate or bowl. Serve immediately with a little sprinkling of the remaining cheese and a grating of black pepper. If the dish does get a little dry before serving, splash in some more hot pasta water and the glossy sauciness will be reborn.
TOASTED MARSHMALLOW SPRINKLE FUDGE BROWNIE CHOCOLATE DEMON PIE
With Ice Cream!
3/4 cup flour
1 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
115G butter, melted
2 large eggs, beaten
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans
2 handfuls of mini marshmallows
FOR THE FROSTING
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup cocoa powder, sifted
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1 cup icing sugar, sifted
Preheat the oven to 180C. Butter a 9-inch round baking tray (with a removable bottom if possible). Set aside.
Sift and mix together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt in a bowl.
In a separate bowl beat together the melted butter, eggs and vanilla. Add to the dry ingredients and mix until smooth. Stir in the toasted nuts. Pour into the prepared pan. Bake on a middle shelf of the oven for 25 mins, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
While the pie is in the oven, make the frosting by mixing all ingredients together in a bowl, beating with an electric whisk until smooth and thick.
When the pie is cooked (toothpick test comes out clean), sprinkle the mini marshmallows on top and return to the oven for a few minutes to melt and toast the marshmallows. Then remove from the oven and carefully spread the chocolate frosting over top. Sprinkle on sprinkles and serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
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