Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Red Onion and Goat Cheese Quesadillas

This is a recipe from the Culinary Institute of America's great "Gourmet Meals in Minutes" cookbook. While much of the book is for meat eaters, it does have some great veggie recipes, and this is one.
It can be eaten as a snack or as a meal, depending on how many quesadillas you want.

The original recipe calls for serving it with a home-made tamale salsa (for which the book also gives the recipe), but I think store-bought salsa would work quite well, and I actually ate them with no accompaniments at all, just as is. They were great.

Red Onion and Goat Cheese Quesadillas

Ingredients (for 8 quesadillas): 

- 2 medium-large red onions, sliced into thin slices 
- a few tbsp of olive oil 
- 1 tsp salt
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1.5 cups of grated cheese: jack or cheddar are best for this 
- 16 flour tortillas (the recipe uses 6-inch tortillas. You can use larger tortillas and make more filling or fewer quesadillas.  You can use GF tortillas as well) 
- 1/2 cup of soft goat cheese
- 1 cup of cilantro leaves (optional, I skipped it)
- To serve: sour cream and salsa (optional) 


1. Saute the onion in 1 tbsp of olive oil over medium-low heat until soft and translucent. Make sure the heat isn't too high, because it will get charred rather than softened. Season with salt and pepper. 

2. For each quesadilla, sprinkle 3 tbsp of the grated jack or cheddar on one tortilla. Crumble 1 tbsp of the goat cheese over the grated cheese, and then spoon about 2 tbsps of the sauteed onion on top of that. If desired, top with a few sprigs of cilantro. Cover with a second tortilla and press down. Repeat this until all the quesadillas are prepared.

3. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a saute pan large enough to fit a quesadilla, over medium heat. Cook each quesadilla for about 2 minutes on each side, until lightly brown and the cheese is melted. Make sure to watch over them, as they burn quite quickly!  Do this with the rest of the quesadillas, adding more oil as needed to cook all of them. 

4. If desired, top each one with sour cream and salsa. If you used larger tortillas you may want to slice them into quarters, as in the picture here. 


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