Heads up, fried egg lovers: Your favorite breakfast just got a serious upgrade. Featuring a base of crispy caramelized cheddar and pepper Jack cheese and a zesty pico de gallo topping, these cheesy frico fried egg tostadas will surpass your wildest breakfast expectations—and might even become your new favorite quick weeknight dinner.
Fricos, or cheese crisps, are a popular treat in northern Italy, where they’re eaten as snacks. While they’re traditionally made with Montasio cheese, any other hard or semi-firm cheese can be used, including Parmesan, Gruyère, or cheddar. Here, we’re giving them a Tex-Mex breakfast twist by using a mix of cheddar and pepper Jack cheese and cracking an egg right in the middle of the frico as it’s cooking. The egg fries while the frico crisps up, yielding one gloriously crispy cheesy egg tostada.
Making a frico egg tostada may sound difficult, but it’s actually very simple. Start with an even layer of freshly shredded cheese in a nonstick pan, place it over medium heat, and wait for the cheese to melt and bubble. Crack the egg into the middle and wait a few minutes more, until the egg cooks through and the cheese caramelizes and begins to solidify. You want to wait until the cheese is fairly firm (but not brittle) before using a large flexible spatula to scoop the whole thing out of the pan and onto a plate. Don’t worry if the cheese is slightly soft at this point—it will continue to firm up as it cools.
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Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 20 mins
Total Time: 45 mins
large tomato, cored, finely chopped
jalapeño, seeded, finely chopped
red onion, finely chopped
chopped fresh cilantro
fresh lime juice
kosher salt, plus more
cheddar cheese, shredded (about 1/2 c.)
pepper Jack cheese, shredded (about 1/2 c.)
Freshly ground black pepper (optional)