Ford Fry is the chef-owner a bevy of restaurants that are staples of the Atlanta culinary scene (Jct. Kitchen, No. 246, The Optimist and Oyster Bar, El Felix, Superica, just to name a few) but when he's cooking for family and friends, morning meals are all about the Tex-Mex classics he grew up loving in Houston.
Tex-Mex is often misunderstood outside the region, but Fry is an ardent champion. He readily dismisses the commonly-held notion that it's "just cheap Mexican food," explaining instead that immigrants to the US adapted their traditional dishes to use readily available ingredients, giving birth to a whole new cuisine. Part of its appeal: innovative use of leftovers. Fry jokes that migas in particular make him look like a kitchen wizard to his family (which he is), because extra tortillas, cheese, chiles, and salsa from a feast the night before transform into a wholly new dish with just a little bit of effort.
Simply cut the tortillas into strips, then squares, crisp them in oil, then use the residual heat for an egg-and-cheese scramble with a kiss of chile heat. Finish it off with avocado slices and your favorite salsa (Fry swears by roasting ingredients on the grill) and presto—Tex-Mex success.
6 thick corn tortillas, cut in rough 1” squares
¼ cup neutral oil
2 tablespoons butter or bacon fat
6 eggs, cracked and mixed
¼ Vidalia or sweet onion, julienned
2 serrano chiles, sliced in rounds
½ cups shredded Chihuahua or jack cheese
¼ cup chopped cilantro
Kosher salt to taste
1 avocado, sliced
How to Make It
In a good-sized skillet, heat oil on medium high heat. Add the cut corn tortillas and stir until crispy. Remove them from the pan and discard oil but leaving a tablespoon or so (as it holds some good corn flavor).
Add the butter and once melted, add the onion and chiles and cook for 30 seconds or so.
Add the eggs and stir to scramble. Once halfway scrambled, add back in the crisp tortillas, cheese, salt, and cilantro.