The Los Angeles Times recently republished their favorite recipes of 2010, and one of them was a very interesting take on quesadillas—what food editor Russ Parsons deems the ideal dinner when you're looking for that elusive combination: real flavor, and not much time. With that in mind, this recipe takes a cue from the Mexican dish but moves things in a very different direction: hearty winter greens like kale, mustard, or collards are cooked down with onion, garlic, and red chile flakes, then studded with salty cubes of feta cheese.
On its own, this filling would make a superb side dish; the briny and salty feta cheese play a perfect foil against the savory greens. But slipped inside a corn tortilla and griddled, along with a few cubes of diced mozzarella, the whole thing melts into an oozy, satisfying dinner.
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1/3 cup minced onion
- 1 pound mixed cooking greens, such as kale, mustard and collard, ribs removed and leaves roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red chile flakes
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 cup diced feta cheese
- 12 corn tortillas
- 1/4 pound low-moisture mozzarella, cut in small dice
In large (12-inch) skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and beginning to color, 3-5 minutes. Add rinsed greens with any water clinging to leaves, along with salt, chile flakes, and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, until greens are tender, 15-30 minutes, depending on type used. Add water as necessary to keep skillet from drying out.
When greens are cooked, stir in feta and remove from heat. Season to taste with salt.
In large, heavy skillet or griddle, heat remaining oil over medium-high heat until shimming, using a spatula to spread evenly on surface. Add as many tortillas as will fit and cook on one side until softened, 2-3 minutes. Flip, then spoon 2-3 tablespoons of filling onto tortillas, along with some mozzarella. Use a spatula to fold tortillas in half.
Cook until tortillas are golden and cheese is melted, 2-3 minutes per side. If necessary, keep cooked quesadillas in warm oven until all are cooked. Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling. Serve immediately.