Well, there you go. I gave you the recipe. It’s in the title. Scramble eggs with salsa and chips. Go to.
What, you’re looking for more detail? Okay.
I’ve been making migas for years, since our grad-school days when we spent four years in a tiny high-ceilinged apartment like a cracker box stood on end. It had been carved out of an old Victorian house, like a lot of student apartments around the University of Illinois. Tiny as it was, it had a fireplace and built-in bookshelves and a screened front porch and floor-to-ceiling windows in the front room. The door to the bedroom was slightly shorter than Arne, and he banged his head walking through it countless times during the first months we lived there. Man, we loved that place.
The kitchen barely qualified as a hallway. The only storage space for food was a banged-up, rickety old metal cabinet that made it a squeeze to get to the stove. I was really just learning to cook, spending hours copying recipes from the cookbook section of A Likely Story, the little bookstore around the corner. I worked there and it was usually pretty empty, so I had lots of time to flip through the cookbooks at the front of the store.
I first encountered migas under the name “Tex-Mex Migas” in The Border Cookbook, a classic by cookbook masters Cheryl Alters Jamison and Bill Jamison (who, incidentally, live outside Santa Fe, and Cheryl is from Illinois). The book calls this version a “Tex-Mex classic.” Other dishes called “migas” (Spanish for “crumbs”) hail from Spain, Mexico, and Portugal; all share the idea of making a lot from a little by creating a new meal from moistened leftover bread. In the Tex-Mex version, the bread is leftover tortillas, cut into triangles or strips and fried. Or, in this quick-and-easy pantry version, bagged tortilla chips.
This recipe is super-simple and makes for a delicious change from ordinary scrambled eggs. It’s a little like a breakfast Frito pie. The tortilla chips soften and add exciting texture to the soft eggs, with the wettest parts getting chewy while some pieces stay crisp. Make it as hot or mild as you like with your choice of salsa, or by sauteeing sliced jalapenos in the pan before you pour in the eggs. To make a more sophisticated version, you could do the same with onion and bell pepper.
This simple 10-minute version is plenty good enough for me, though.
Tex-Mex Migas with Salsa and Tortilla Chips
Serves: 2 Time: 10 minutes
Place a small skillet over medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons of oil or butter. While the oil heats, crack four large eggs into a bowl and add one tablespoon milk or half-and-half and one tablespoon water. Whisk with a fork until the color is evenly yellow. Stir in two to four tablespoons salsa – I like a classic tomato salsa, but feel free to experiment.
The oil should be hot by now. Pour the eggs into the pan, turn the heat to medium-low, and cook, scraping frequently from the bottom, until they are about a minute from being done to your liking. Roughly crush in about 15 corn tortilla chips. (I prefer ones with a craggy texture, but whatever you’ve got around will be fine.) Stir them in and turn off the heat. Continue turning the eggs in the pan until they are just barely done, then quickly transfer to two serving plates. Top each with a little shredded cheese and sour cream, if desired. Eat hot, with more salsa and chips on the side.