Friday, November 13, 2015

Monte Cristo Quesadillas

EACH YEAR AFTER THANKSGIVING, we make Monte Cristo sandwiches, using slices of turkey, ham, and Swiss cheese. The sandwiches are dipped in an egg mixture and cooked in a hot skillet, much like French toast. The sandwiches are then sprinkled with powdered sugar and served with cranberry sauce.

These Monte Cristo quesadillas are not made with Thanksgiving leftovers because I don't yet have any. But I did have some tortillas I wanted to use, left from making Pot Roast Quesadillas. I used deli sliced turkey, ham, and Swiss cheese and served them with homemade Strawberry Ginger Jam.

I did not dip these quesadillas in custard before cooking but I did consider it. . .

Monte Cristo Quesadillas
2 large tortillas
2 - 3 oz. sliced turkey
2 - 3 oz. sliced ham
2 - 3 oz. sliced Swiss cheese
Powdered sugar
Butter for pan

Layer turkey, ham, and cheese slices on one tortilla. Top with the other tortilla.

Heat a pat or two of butter in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Put the stacked tortillas into the skillet and cook until well browned then flip over and cook the other side until browned and the cheese is melted.

Remove from skillet and dust with powdered sugar. Cut into wedges and serve with berry jam or maple syrup.

Repeat steps for additional quesadillas..

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Pot Roast Quesadillas

A COUPLE OF TIMES A YEAR, I have a craving for a pot roast just like my Mother always made, braised on the stove top. I would eat some of the beef but it was really the potatoes and carrots cooked in that broth that I loved so much. In fact, my brother and I would reach under the table to swap food--I would give him more meat and he would give me his carrots.

My choice of beef cut is grass fed sirloin tip. I season it and then sear it in a screaming hot pan. (I often set off the smoke alarm during this process). I remove the pan from the heat to let it cool down a bit before adding a couple cups of freshly brewed coffee which is Mama's secret ingredient. The coffee helps tenderize the meat and makes a rich and flavorful broth. (Think Southern Red Eye Gravy).

After our original meal, I like to dream up ways to use the leftovers. Sometimes, I make soup. Or it may be enchiladas or tacos. This time I made quesadillas  and served them with some homemade salsa. They were great!

Pot Roast Quesadillas
1 (10-inch) whole wheat tortilla for each quesadilla
1/4 cup grated Monterrey Jack cheese each
1/2 cup shredded beef plus chopped potatoes and carrots each
Sliced onion (optional but delicious) for each

Heat your black iron skillet over medium heat.

Spread cheese, then the beef mixture on a tortilla. Fold in half. Melt a pat of butter in the skillet then add the folded tortilla. Brown on one side then flip to brown the other side.

I like my quesadillas crisp, so I brown them thoroughly, lowering the heat if necessary.

Serve with your favorite salsa.