Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Grilled Quesadillas and #CookoutWeek


I'm not sure why it's taken me so long to share these, but quesadillas are a family favorite. When the kids were still at home-and I must say I miss those days; especially the summer days-I often made these dinner. Yes, those were the days that Zoe only ordered cheese quesadillas in restaurants and though I'm sure she still does, I know her palate has greatly expanded. But restaurants don't do grilled quesadillas and in my humble opinion that is what makes these so good! Quesadillas on the grill are truly a mind altering experience. Well, maybe not mind altering, but pretty damn delicious!

Grilled quesadillas are perfect for party appetizers and as the main course. I usually made two big ones to a customer, sliced them in wedges, made a salad and my customers were sure to leave happy. Usually I set up a quesadilla bar and filled it with anything leftover from the fridge and allowed my "customers" to build their own. Paper plates came in handy to keep their creations on, until they were ready to fire on the grill. For parties, this is also easily done and trust me when I say these disappear faster than chocolate cake.



I use anything and everything to fill them. Lots of freshly grated cheese. Mangoes and goat's cheese are a luxurious choice. Sauteed mushrooms and onions and peppers for comfort. Leftover potatoes-hashed or baked. Chilies of all sorts. Fresh salsa. Chorizo-cooked and crumbled or dried and diced. Hot dogs for the wee ones, or the not so wee. Pestos make a flavorful base if you are tired of salsa. It's up to you how gourmet or how basic you want to keep these. One thing though is for sure; you never have enough. In the off chance we did have some left over, they were easily reheated in a toaster oven for a few minutes.

A few things I do...I always butter at least one side of the tortilla and then I salt it. Stack them and they are ready to go. Another thing that is quite tasty is adding leftover or stale tortilla chips that have been crushed to your ingredients. These give a nice flavor and some extra added crunch. Try it! I grill over medium high heat, but watch carefully, because while it is OK to get some scorch marks, you don't want to burn your bread!


You can grill these in two ways. Have your customer's pile their ingredients on one side of the tortilla and the cheese on the other. Place on the grill, close it, and cook for about a minute. Then fold  the cheese half to the other side. Press down gently and the cheese will hold everything together. Let the bottom side brown and then flip and give that side a few more grill marks too. Be careful not to pile on to much or it will ooze out. Better to make a few more if you are starving!

The second way to do these is to use one tortilla covered with toppings. Close the grill to melt the cheese. After a minute or so, place a salted and buttered tortilla with butter side out on top of the one on the grill. Press down and let cook a minute or so and then flip the entire tortilla over and cook that side. Both methods work well, but some folks don't like flippin'! Cut into wedges with your favorite kitchen scissors when ready to serve.


Have a quesadilla party. Actually quesadillas make dinner a party. Have fun with it. I'd love to know your favorite creations. My fave is grilled corn, chorizo, poblanos or green chilies, some leftover roasted potatoes, salsa or cilantro pesto, some cheese - either cheddar or jalapeno or goat's cheese and a sprinkle of crushed chips. But then again I love mangoes on there, too. This is such a hard choice, I think I'll have two!

Don't forget to enter the giveaway. Someone will win a grill. Really!


Grilled Quesadillas
Serves 1
Time to Make: About 20 minutes
Please see more notes above!
Ingredients:
Flour Tortillas - I use the snack size but bigger ones work well also.
Butter - 1-2 t per tortilla
Salt - Coarse Salt for sprinkling
Salsa or pesto - About 1-2 T per tortilla. Don't make it to wet.
Veggies - Your choice. Cooked or not.
Chilies - I love roasted poblanos or Anaheims. Jalapenos, pickled or fresh work great.
Fruit - Mangoes or cantaloupe or even peaches.
Meat - Chorizos, Italian sausage, hot dogs, left over chicken, are just a few ideas
Cheese - 1/4 to 1/3 c per quesadilla unless you are a cheese lover in which case, add more! Any cheese works well. I like cheddar and jalapeno, and also goat's cheese.
Crushed tortilla chips - About 1 T per tortilla

These can also be served with guacamole or extra salsa for dipping into after grilling.

Directions:
Preheat grill to medium. Prepare your tortillas by placing a layer of salsa or pesto on the bottom of the tortilla and only on one side, unless you are doing the flipping version-in which case, cover the whole thing.  Add your choice of toppings. about 2-4 T total, but this depends on the size of the tortilla being used! Just don't use too much! Sprinkle on the crushed tortilla chips last, if you are using them. Now sprinkle the cheese on the other half of the tortilla.  Have your creations ready to go. (See notes above). Place tortillas on grill. Close grill for about 1 minute. Fold the cheese side of the tortilla over to the other side to form a half moon. Press down carefully. Cook until bottom is golden. Flip and cook the other side for a few minutes. Watch carefully so these don't burn. Remove from grill when cooked and let cool for about a minute. Then slice into wedges. Serve with guacamole or extra salsa for dipping.


Remember to enter. You could win a grill and then invite me to dinner!
This is pretty much everything you need to host an awesome cookout this summer. It's a prize pack worth over $300! Thank you so much to all of the wonderful sponsors listed above, who have made #CookoutWeek possible.


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Don't forget to check back throughout the week with all of the bloggers participating to get some yummy #CookoutWeek recipes. Here's the full list of participating bloggers:

The PinterTest Kitchen2 Cookin' MamasA Day in the Life on the Farmaddicted 2 recipesAimee Broussard & Co.Amy's Cooking AdventuresAngels Home Sweet HomesteadBakin' and EggcerptsBalancing MotherhoodBody RebootedCheese Curd In ParadiseCindy's Recipes and WritingsCook With 5 KidsCook. Craft. Love.Cookaholic WifeCricket's ConfectionsCrumb: A Food BlogEat, Drink, Be Healthy!Everyday EileenFairyburgerFood ParsedGet the Good Stuff!Goodie GodmotherHezzi-D's Books and CooksHome in the Finger LakesJennifer CooksJessie WeaverKate's Recipe BoxLife on FoodLittle House Big AlaskaLittle Scratch KitchenMaking MiraclesMoore or Less CookingRhubarb and HoneySavvy In The KitchenSeduction in the KitchenSimple Food 365Style IslandThanks for Cookin'!The Food Hunter's Guide To CuisineThe Hungary Buddha Eats the WorldThe Spiffy CookieThe Weekday GourmetThis is How I CookTramplingroseVintage KittyWest Via Midwest

Looking forward to sharing some yummy recipes with everyone! :)





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