Quick and Easy Quesadilla for the Rooky, the Reluctant and the Real-Experienced Cook

I had so much fun at the Daily Globe Women’s Expo in Worthington on Saturday, where I did a couple of cooking demonstrations. The first session I presented included recipes using ingredients I like to keep in my pantry and refrigerator at all times. A couple of cans of organic black beans in the cupboard, organic whole wheat tortillas in the freezer, at least a dozen eggs purchased from a local farmer, along with a variety of cheese and peppers in the refrigerator, onions stored in a basket on my island shelf and garlic bulbs on my kitchen counter are some of the things I like to keep on hand, knowing I’ll always have a few quick meals to create. Jen and Julia, both employees of the Daily Globe, were my very efficient assistants for that demonstration.

Later that day, I did a short cooking demonstration to lead into the final act of the day, a wine-tasting. Mmm-hmm. Tastings of several varieties of wine, along with educational information about each one, ended the Daily Globe Women’s Expo.

Justine, a reporter at the Daily Globe (who also writes a blog called Dirty Laundry), and Daily Globe sports editor, Aaron Hagen, were my assistants during that session. Justine is a seasoned cook who loves to spend time in the kitchen. But Aaron? Well, let’s just say this young bachelor hasn’t had many opportunities to develop confidence and skills in the kitchen.

With this in mind, along with knowing how hectic Aaron’s schedule can be, Justine and Daily Globe features editor, Beth Rickers Namanny, (another seasoned, wonderful cook who writes the blog, lagniappe) decided to create a collection of easy-to-make, few-ingredient recipes that could help their favorite sports editor stay nourished and healthy. They’ve asked readers to contribute to the compilation of non-intimidating recipes for the reluctant cook. You’ll find some of them at Beth’s blog.

On the days I’m in the kitchen testing recipes all day, I just want a quick and easy, no-frills, somewhat-healthful and very flavorful supper. Often, that means quesadillas.

With some tasty Three-Citrus Chicken remaining in my refrigerator, I made a delicious Quesadilla. I use a non-stick grill pan over medium heat on my stove when I make quesadillas. This way, there is no need for any fat in the pan to toast the filled and folded tortillas.

This quesadilla is great for busy days, busy cooks, seasoned cooks and yes, even the reluctant, rooky cook. You see that look on Aaron’s face in the photo above? He was in disbelief that he could actually make a pan of marinated shrimp. But he did it, and the shrimp was cooked to perfection. I’m pretty sure he would be able to handle this Quick and Easy Quesadilla. And, I’m pretty sure he’ll have that same look on his face as he slides a golden, melty, toasted quesadilla from his pan in his own kitchen.

I think this one needs to go into the recipe collection for the busy, reluctant cook at the Daily Globe.

Quick and Easy Quesadilla

For each serving:

  • 1 whole wheat quesadilla
  • Shredded Monterey Jack or Mexican Blend cheese
  • Vegetables you have on hand, such as onions, peppers, roasted vegetables (such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, carrots, asparagus, broccoli), or grilled vegetables, chopped
  • Black beans
  • Leftover meat, chopped
  • 1/2 of an avocado, sliced

Lay tortilla on work surface. Sprinkle cheese generously over half of the tortilla. Layer with vegetables, meat, beans and top with sliced avocadoes and a little more cheese. Fold empty half over the filled half. Place in heated non-stick pan over medium heat. Cook until brown on underside. Turn over to brown the other side.

Transfer to work surface and cut into 3 traingles. Serve with a bowl of soup, fresh fruit. Makes one serving.

5 thoughts on “Quick and Easy Quesadilla for the Rooky, the Reluctant and the Real-Experienced Cook

  1. I just printed the quesadilla recipe and, in the past, did great with the foccacia bread.
    Since it’s normally just my wife and me, it worked well to cut the bread recipe in half and use an 8X8 pan.

    • Enjoy the quesadilla, Roger. I’m so glad you are having fun with the foccacia bread recipe from my column. I haven’t made it in a while — I think it’s time.

  2. Pingback: Cheesy Quesadillas with Flavor that’s Anything But Flat | Yummly

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