Saturday, May 17, 2014

Something From Nothing #24: Cheese Quesadillas

When I was a kid I lived with my family in a middle class suburban community south of Houston known as Clear Lake City. Located right around the corner from NASA, most of this area's residents were from all over country and were most likely relocated here by either NASA or some related company.

As far as I knew there were at least two exceptions to this rule, my family and my school friend Linda's, who were all second generation Houstonians. My dad's family came from the great state of Oklahoma, while Linda's family on both sides were from Mexico.

Since we were both latchkey kids, more often than not we would walk home from school together and land up at one or the other's houses for a snack and maybe a little bit of backyard gymnastics before doing our homework. I don't really remember what we snacked on when we landed up at my house, but I sure do remember what we had at Linda's.

At her house the specialty was a folded corn tortilla stuffed with half a slice of American cheese and fried in a little bit of oil. This was my first experience with a quesadilla of any kind and I fell in love. A few years later, I discovered that they were also delicious made with flour tortillas and just about any kind of meat, cheese or vegetable you can imagine stuffed in between.

Well that was more than a few years ago and I have no idea whatever happened to Linda. I'm sure wherever she may be, she is probably still making people smile with her quesadillas. So Linda, if by some chance you are reading this, thanks so much for turning me on to this Mexican version of the grilled cheese. Of course, I probably also have you to blame for an extra ten pounds or so.

Cheese Quesadillas

Even though you can get really exotic with the fillings, my favorite quesadilla is just simply a tortilla with melted cheese inside. I like to start with this and add sides like guacamole (my favorite), sour cream, salsa, jalapenos and every now and then a little shredded lettuce and some chopped tomato when I'm in the mood for some health food.

2 - 8" tortillas
1 cup shredded cheese (I used a quesadilla blend, but feel free to use your favorite)

Heat a non-stick flat bottomed pan over medium high heat.

Place one tortilla into the hot pan and heat for just a few seconds. Flip over, sprinkle 1/2 of the cheese over it.

Fold tortilla in half and continue to cook until the cheese is melted and the tortilla is golden brown on both sides. Remove from pan and slice into quarters. Serve as is or get all jiggy with it and add your favorite sides or mix ins.

Makes 2

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