So hot back then – nachos from the nineties

I don’t know about you, but back in 1991, nothing said ‘mature’ quite as much as popping out to the new Belaroma Café for a ‘cup of chino’ and a bagel. It was a 15-minute drive away, but cafes were a bit few and far between back then. Sure, there was the Grace Brothers cafeteria, where you pushed your tray along the metal shelf and ogled cling wrapped bits of black forest gateau but nothing competed with the Belaroma in terms of sophistication.

I seem to recall being there ALL THE TIME once I got my drivers license and could meet up with friends at the shocking hour of 9pm on a Tuesday! The freedom was delicious.

But perhaps we overdid it a little. I don’t think I’ve eaten a piece of carrot cake since 1993 and I can’t even say the word ‘nachos’ without a touch of scorn, so cemented is it to 1992 in my memories. But determined to be open minded in my quest for new family food, last week I whipped up a version of the tex-mex classic. Lo and behold, it was a MASSIVE hit, with the light-eating Miss F getting through two whole plates of it. I guess there was a reason why it became so popular, after all.

And it’s another recipe that can be made ahead and then assembled whenever you need.

Enjoy it; I’m off to dig through carrot cake recipes…

Corn chip lures, with all the healthy bits melted on top.


1 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, finely diced
500g lean beef mince
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp oregano
3-4 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
1×2 tbsp tomato paste sachet
1 carrot, peeled, grated
½ green capsicum, finely diced
400g borlotti beans, rinsed, drained
400g can chopped tomatoes
½ cup water

To serve
Corn chips (buy the ones from the health food isle)
Grated cheese

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Saute the onion until golden, stirring frequently. Add in the mince and use the spoon to break up any lumps until it is all browned.

Add in the garlic, cumin, oregano, sweet chilli and tomato paste. Mix in the carrot, capsicum and beans and combine well.

Pour over the tomatoes and use the half-cup of water to swish out the remnants of the can. Bring to a simmer for about 15-20 minutes. Taste and season if need be.

Set aside, ready to use whenever you need it.

To compile the nachos, either…

Add a few chips to a plate (don’t give them too many!). Spread over a layer of mince, scatter the tomato and avocado, sprinkle with cheese and microwave until it is hot and the cheese just melted.


Make one big family serve on an oven tray (lined with foil) and bake in the oven until the cheese is melted and golden.

13 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Gen said,

    Looks yum! I have similar recipe which I use all the time. I make a big batch and freeze some as well. We also like ours in taco shells. My 3 year old seems to like the tacos better because he gets to assemble it himself.

    • 2

      wendyblume said,

      yep, the mix makes a good general tex-mex mix. Tacos or tortillas would be good too. My kids can’t believe that such a thing as tacos exist. A BIG CHIP! they’re in heaven.

  2. 3

    Emma said,

    Yum, these are on the menu for the weekend!! Looks like an easy Sunday night dinner to me!

  3. 4

    Natural New Age Mum said,

    I found some really good organic corn chips with smuggled vegies the other day online – they are really yummy!!! The kids love nachos.

  4. 6

    Megan said,

    My kids love these! Last time I made them I used Vitawheat Rice Crackers instead of corn chips. They worked really well.

  5. 8

    Nachos. One of my all time favourite foods. Am making a similar meal tonight but with chicken and black beans. There will also be no corn chips or salsa as that was just all eaten while standing outside giggling at our new chickens.

  6. 10

    Mel B said,

    I made these today before I headed out to my (night) work. I took some for my dinner and hubby and kids had it at home. Delicious! Bad news is, I am now snacking on it way too late at night since I got home.

  7. 12

    Chris said,

    My kids love Mexican! I think they like the sour cream. We are a large family so do a little banquet with choice of nachos, burritos or tacos!

Comment RSS · TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: