Really Cool Chile Nachos
A perfect plate of nachos is made up of layers of homemade corn chips, evenly dotted with blobs of spicy salsa and cooling sour cream, all held together with ‘that’ creamy, orange cheese sauce.
But how do you make ‘that’ orange cheese sauce? When most cheeses are melted the fat separates, resulting in a greasy mess, so normally flour and milk are used to bind the cheese into a sauce. However, according to Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking, sodium citrate solves this problem, by acting as an emulsifying agent.
Sodium citrate is sodium salt from citrus, and it preserves in addition to imparting a salty tang. To use it, you first dissolve it in a liquid (water, milk or beer…) over heat and then add grated cheese. The beauty of using sodium citrate is that you can use almost any type of cheese you like, and the flavour is undiluted by flour (unlike when you make a béchamel based cheese sauce).