Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Quesadillas Supreme and Taco Salad

This quesadilla recipe is the best I've ever tasted. I got it from a co-worker about 30 years ago and it has been a family favorite ever since. It's vegetarian, so I usually fix a taco salad to go with it for those family members who like meat with dinner (ahem. . . that would be my husband). The taco salad recipe is from Sunset Magazine and it, too, dates back actually longer than the quesadilla--probably a good 35 years. There are many really good taco salad recipes, but this one remains our favorite. Since this menu requires much assembly and cooking JUST before dining, the sequence of steps I usually follow are: 1) mix up the quesadilla filling and set aside 2) cut up the tomatoes, slice the avocado and grate the cheese for the salad 3) cook the meat for the taco salad 4) spread the filling onto the tortillas for the quesadilla (put any leftover filling in the refrigerator) 5) Heat the oil for cooking the quesadillas and cook them (unless you have a HUGE skillet, you can only do one or two of these at a time) and while these are cooking, 6) start assembling the salad plates with the chips, and lettuce. If I'm making several quesadillas, I put the cooked ones on a platter and place in a warm oven (200 degrees will do it) and 7) finish assembly of the salad - SERVE! and ENJOY! - whew!!!

Oh - the menu! Well, that's really all it is, except for dessert. Any of the previous Mexican Food desserts will do, or take a look at the next one!

1 can (4 oz) mushroom stems and pieces, drained
1 can (4 ½ oz) diced olives
1 can (4 oz) diced green chilis
1 small tomato, diced
1 small, soft avocado, mashed
½ lb cheddar cheese, grated
½ lb monterey jack cheese, grated
Flour tortillas
Oil for frying
Combine first 7 ingredients. Spread, no more than ¼ inch thick and no closer than ½ inch from edge, onto one half of a flour tortilla. Fold tortilla over. Repeat with as many tortillas as you need for the meal. Leftover filling keeps very well in a covered, airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Leftover quesadillas don’t reheat very well because they lose their crispness. Fry in approx ½ inch of oil over medium-high heat until lightly browned, turn and brown other side. Pat with paper towels. Serve warm with sour cream and salsa.

1 lb lean ground beef
¼ cup chopped onion
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce
1 medium-sized head iceberg lettuce
½ cup cheedar cheese, grated
2 medium sized tomatoes, cubed
1 avocado, peeled and sliced (optional)
Tortilla chips
Place beef and onion into a frying pan over medium-high heat; stir until meat is crumbly and has lost its pinkness and the onion is tender (about 7 minutes). Discard any fat. Stir in salt, chili powder, and tomato sauce; reduce to low heat and keep hot. Shred lettuce and arrange on individual salad plates, top each with a scoop of hot meat mixture and sprinkle evenly with cheese, Garnish each salad with tomato cubes and avocado slices. Place tortilla chips around edges of salads and serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.

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