National Tortilla Chip Day, a day set aside for the crunchy snack loved by millions across the nation, is observed annually on February 24th.
The tortilla chip is most commonly served with salsa, chile con queso, guacamole, cheese dips or other dips. Tortilla chips are made from corn tortillas that have been cut into wedges and then fried. The corn tortillas are made from corn, vegetable oil, salt and water. Typically made with yellow corn, tortillas can also be made with white, blue or red corn.
Even though tortilla chips have always been considered to be a Mexican food, known as tostados, they were first mass-produced in Los Angeles in the late 1940s. It is said that the triangle-shaped tortilla chips were made popular by Rebecca Webb Carranza as a way to use the misshapen tortillas that were rejected from the automated tortilla manufacturing machine that she and her husband used at their Los Angeles deli and tortilla factory.
Carranza realized that once the discarded tortillas were cut into triangle shapes and fried, they became a popular snack. She then sold them for a dime a bag at the El Zarape Tortilla Factory. Carranza received the Golden Tortilla Award in 1994 for her contribution to the Mexican food industry.
The United States is one of the primary markets for tortilla chips.
Another favorite dish made with tortilla chips is nachos. The dish was first created around 1943 by Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya. Nachos are tortilla chips served with melted or shredded cheese, and often additional toppings are added, such as meat, salsa, refried beans, tomatoes, diced onion, lettuce, olives, jalapenos, guacamole and sour cream.