Serious Eats: Recipes

Essentials: Quesadillas

My two main goals as a cook are to squeeze more vegetables into our diet and to master the essential dishes of French bourgeois and American home cooking. My husband’s two main goals as an eater are to convince me to braise large pieces of meat more often and to consume quesadillas as frequently as possible. As it happens, these desires work together better than you might expect: I tend to use quesadillas as a kind of reward meal for a week that has otherwise been grimly healthy or as a break for myself after a day or two of ambitious cooking.

For many people the idea of a recipe for quesadillas is silly, I know, but I spent a few years improvising sloppy, not-so-great ones before Cook’s Illustrated turned me into the confident filler and flipper I am today. The most important tips here are to fold the tortillas in half and fry them as half-moons and to brush a little vegetable oil on the outside. The goal here is not authenticity, Mexican food buffs: it’s cheesy deliciousness.

Quick and Easy Quesadillas

-makes 2 folded 8-inch quesadillas (serves 1 in our house)-
Adapted from the March & April 2005 issue of Cook’s Illustrated

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