Mi querida Mexico,
I fell in love with your people when I spent a month there in high school and lived with an extremely kind and welcoming host family.
I fell in love with your incredible history when I had the chance to visit the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza during a stay in Cancun.
I fell in love your amazing cuisine when I volunteered at an orphanage and was finally brave enough to be adventurous in regards to my culinary palate.
Most importantly, I fell in love with you since my first ever trip there and will be in love with you forever more.
Chilaquiles with Tomatillo Salsa and Eggs
recipe courtesy of the cookbook Breakfast Comforts: With Enticing Recipes for the Morning, including Favorite Dishes from Restaurants Around the Country by Rick Rodgers
14 corn tortillas, each cut into sixths
2 cups canola oil
2 lb. tomatillos, papery husks removed
1 1/2 cups chopped white onions
1/2 cup chicken stock or low-sodium chicken broth
1/3 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves, plus chopped cilantro for garnish
4 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1 jalapeno chile, seeded and minced
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
6 large eggs
Minced red onion for garnish
Grated cotija or aged goat cheese for garnish
Crema or sour cream for garnish
-Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Position one rack in the middle of the oven and a second rack in the top-third of the oven. Spread the tortilla wedges on 2 rimmed baking sheets. Bake until the tortillas begin to dry out, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool completely.
-In a heavy frying pan, heat the canola oil over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Working in batches, add the tortilla wedges and fry until golden on one side, about 30 seconds. Turn and fry until golden on the second side, 15-20 seconds. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Repeat with the remaining wedges. Discard the oil in the pan.
-Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-high, add the tomatillos, and cook until they soften and become paler in color (but before they burst), about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the tomatillos to a blender or food processor. Add the white onions, chicken stock, cilantro leaves, garlic, and chile and process until pureed. Season with salt and pepper.
-Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to the pan and heat over medium heat. Add the tomatillo sauce (it will splatter) and bring to a boil. Cook, stirring often, until the sauce has thickened and is reduced by about one-third, about 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low. A handful at a time, add the tortillas, pressing them with a wooden spoon to submerge them under the shimmering sauce. Cook until the tortillas are softened, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and cover to keep warm.
-In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper just until thoroughly blended. Do not overbeat. In a frying pan, preferably nonstick, warm the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the egg mixture to the pan and cook until the eggs begin to set, about 20 seconds. Stir with a heatproof spatula, scraping up the eggs on the bottom and sides of the pan and folding them towards the center. Repeat until the eggs are barely cooked into moist curds. Remove the pan from the heat and let the eggs stand in the pan to allow the residual heat to finish cooking them, about 1 minute.
-Spoon the chilaquiles and eggs onto plates. Sprinkle with the red onion, cheese, and cilantro, and drizzle with crema. Serve at once.