CHAAT INSPIRED TATER TOT NACHOS
I correlate nachos with a good time. They are easily shareable, make for an excellent choice for happy hour, and are such a fun dish to entertain with on Football Sundays. You’re probably already sold but what if I told you there’s something better than nachos? Stay with me here. Imagine your favorite mouthwatering queso on a bed of tater tots. Yes, those little, crispy, nuggets of potato goodness. This my friend is totchos, or tater tot nachos. I’m happy to introduce you to a glorious situation: chaatchos. The things that I love about my favorite chaats (nicely spicy, a little sweet and tangy, sour, umami bomb flavored category of Indian street food) in Totchos form! Truly, the highlight of my 2020 quarantine woes. Celebrate you by taking some time to make these over the weekend as an accompaniment to an appetizer spread to watch Kuch Kuch Hota Hai for the 124th time or simply just because on a Monday- if you’re looking for an excellent way to start your week!
Depending on how much time you’ve got on your hands, make it semi-homemade by quickly putting together store bought ingredients. Depending on how much time I have, I will even sub store bought queso AND green chutney. I sometimes won’t even bother adding the toppings and just make the queso and the tots. Essentially, you can’t go wrong and any way you put it together... it’s a foolproof hit! I do recommend getting a head start on happy hour though while the tater tots finish cooking in the oven. You’re welcome. :)
For the tator tots:
32 oz bag of frozen tator tots
2 teaspoons of chaat masala (I use the Everest brand)
For the green chutney queso:
1 lb (16 oz) of Velveeta cheese, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/4 cup cilantro green chutney, store bought or homemade
1 (10 oz) can diced tomatoes and green chiles i.e. Rotel, undrained
For sour cream/yogurt mixture:
1/4 cup Greek yogurt or sour cream
1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt (or more to taste)
1/8 teaspoon of cumin powder
1/8 teaspoon of red chili powder
2 tablespoons of cilantro, finely chopped
1/4 cup red onion, finely diced
Pickled jalapeños, to taste
Lime wedges, for serving
Pomegranate seeds, optional but highly recommended
1/2 cup sev/aloo bhujia, optional but highly recommended
Toss frozen tater tots with the chaat masala in a sheet pan and then cook tater tots according to package directions, adding 4-5 additional minutes to ensure that they are extra crispy!
Then, get started on your sour cream/yogurt sauce. Mix together cumin powder, red chili powder, and the sour cream or Greek yogurt and set aside.
When you have 10 minutes of cooking time until the tater tots are finished baking, it’s time to make your queso! In a medium saucepan over the stove, place your cheese, green chutney, and can of tomatoes/green chiles! Then, stir frequently over medium heat for 5 minutes until the cheese is gooey, melty, and green.
Immediately top your cooked tater tots with the amount of queso you would like! Then, top with a combination of sev/aloo bhujia, pickled jalapenos, onions, sour cream/yogurt sauce, cilantro and pomegranate seeds. Dress it up with some lime juice and then dig in!
~ Feeds 8-10
The queso recipe makes more queso than needed but I realize some prefer their totchos extra cheesy, whereas others are good with a tinier amount! If you find yourself with leftover queso, don’t fret. Add some into your boxed mac and cheese or use it to top a big comforting bowl of chili.
If you cannot find green chutney, Trader Joe’s Zhoug sauce is an amazing substitute!
If you are using store bought queso, just mix two cups of your favorite queso with 1/4 cup of green chutney.
There are some great substitutions online for chaat masala or ways to make your own at home. I recommend purchasing some if you can find it, because it is such a great spice on hand to have for many uses. I like to describe it as an Indian Tajín. Anything that I love with Tajín, I’ve also loved using chaat masala for i.e. fruit and elote!