Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Black Bean & Corn Quesadillas

I can trust y'all, right?  I mean, we are talking about food here... peoples' likes and dislikes and that can get pretty intense sometimes.  See, I need to confess something....I am always on the hunt for vegetarian recipes that I think my family will like.  There, I said it.  I'm in a house of carnivores, and God knows I like to eat meat too, but I also sometimes just need to change things up a little with a vegetarian option.
Baby's really into avocado, hence my heavier hand with the guac

And can I just say that it is HARD to quietly get a vegetarian dish to my table??  Knowing how much I love cooking, Rob will usually ask about what meals I'm planning because he's awesome and wants to be supportive of my obses- *ahem*, I mean hobby.  If it comes to light ahead of time that I'm working on a dish with no meat in it, I get The Look.

But this time, I won. :)  And even though I agree this would also be good with chicken in it (occasionally), we BOTH liked it despite it's lack of meat!

Black Bean & Corn Quesadillas
Recipe adapted from AllRecipes

2 tsp olive oil
3 tbsp chopped green onion
1 (15.5 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/4 cups frozen corn, thawed
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 cup salsa
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
8 (8 inch) whole wheat tortillas
1 1/2 cups shredded cheese of your choice

1.  Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in onion, and cook about a minute, just to soften it up a little.  Stir in beans and corn (if you're in a rush and using corn that's still frozen, add the corn first and let that heat up a minute or two before adding the beans).
Look at that COLOR!!

2.  Add sugar, salsa, and pepper flakes to the skillet; mix well. Cook until heated through, about 3 minutes. 

3.  Sprinkle the shredded cheese on half of a tortilla.  Top with a little of the bean-corn mixture and sprinkle with some more cheese [Note: a little goes a long way].  Cook on a hot griddle or dry skillet until golden, then flip and cook on the other side.  Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling. 

The combination of the brown sugar along with the salsa and red pepper flakes really gives this an amazing flavor.  It's so not spicy at all (but then I used medium salsa and was careful with the red pepper), rather I get this lovely warming sensation in my mouth, but it's tempered by the sweetness of the sugar.  I almost think it has a barbecue flavor but that's not entirely true.....Give it a try and let me know what you think!

As for cheese, I used two different kinds of cheeses: cheddar and pepperjack.  Cheddar is my standard go-to for all quesadillas.  And since I had some leftover pepperjack cheese from those club sandwiches (and Rob and I love the kick of pepperjack), I tore those slices up too.  Wouldn't you know but I happened to love both!  I got a better sense of the filling from the cheddar quesadillas, while the pepperjack ones satisfied my desire for spice (and, again, I can't get over how great that sweetness is in this!).

So, if you're a vegetarian or into vegetarian dishes, try this out and let me know what you think of the flavor.  If you're a Tried-and-True-sure-this-looks-great-but-I-can't-do-it Carnivore, my feelings aren't hurt. ;)  Try this with some shredded chicken or, better yet, pork. 

p.s. Just want to let you know that the leftover filling, topped with some cheese and guacamole, make awesome nachos the next day!

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1 comment:

  1. Hm... Nate tried the whole "Where's the meat?" thing the very first night that we moved in together (verbatim, actually - he said exactly those words to me). I told him that there was raw meat in the freezer and he should feel no obligation to eat anything I spent my time making for us. To his credit, he is now impeccably polite about not judging food other people make by its meatiness.
    Anyway, all I'm suggesting is that if Rob got hungry enough he might adapt. And maybe while I'm suggesting things, I'll suggest you not tell him I said that.