Cheese, glorious cheese! What is there more handsome?
This white queso is particularly dashing… ultra creamy with a ton of flavor coming from the crispy spicy chorizo, green chiles, and pickled jalapenos.
May I have some more, please?
This queso was inspired by a similar dish at Butchertown hall, one of our favorite neighborhood restaurants here in Nashville. While their chorizo is house-made and simply fabulous, we used a raw bulk chorizo from Whole Foods and it worked perfectly to add spice and sass to this queso. Their house-made chips are also on point, and I even convinced them to throw in a few extras with my other leftovers when I went for lunch the other day. Because store-bought tortilla chips just don’t compare to freshly fried homemade ones.
I’ll admit, I didn’t grow up eating queso. In fact, I’d really never heard of it (oh, the humanity!) until I moved to Nashville 9 years ago. And I’ll also admit, I am not a fan of the traditional velveeta-and-rotel combination (don’t kill me, but it’s true).
Still, not having grown up with the stuff, I wasn’t very experienced when it came time to make it. I first tried to make it like a bechemel, a cheese sauce that starts with a roux of flour and butter and then adds milk and finally a mix of melty cheeses. Basically mac ‘n cheese, without the mac.
When that didn’t work (the result was too thick and not the perfectly creamy texture I was looking for), I gave up the gourmet combination of cheeses and used a block of “Queso-Melt” cheese, basically white American cheese branded with the Mexican flag. In the process of seeking out the perfect cheese, however, I did discover you can buy blocks of white American cheese (which also works here) at the deli counter at Publix. Just ask for a single hunk instead of slices. Trust me, grated cheese will melt so much nicer than sliced.
The other trick to the creamiest queso? Evaporated milk. It’s not 100% required (you could use all whole milk in a pinch) but, especially if you plan to reheat the queso later, the proteins and stabilizers in canned evaporated milk will result in a much creamier, and more stable texture.
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