Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Chorizo Poblano Quesadillas with Lime Sriracha Slaw

This combination of flavors was over-the-top delicious, a guaranteed two-thumbs-up hit with that combination of ingredients. It was mid-week, the refrigerator held a variety of produce, an impressive collection of condiments in bottles, and a few other assorted ingredients, but I had no idea of what to make for lunch. 

When in doubt, it's easy to make a large entree salad or whip up something to fill a tortilla. I went the tortilla route. Red cabbage, poblano peppers and spring onions combined with a spicy, citrusy mayo-based sauce for a peppy coleslaw. RL did so many enthusiastic taste tests of the slaw that I had to banish him from the working side of the island... "Step away from the bowl!"

Chorizo, more poblano peppers and a hint of chipotle pepper created a filling that brought the taste buds to attention... in a good way. We both love spicy heat but I don't want to kill off any taste buds along the way.

Warm a tortilla enough so it won't crack when folded; cover half with layers of slaw, chorizo filling, grated cheese and fresh vegetables; fold and heat on both sides in a dry skillet until lightly browned and presto! you've got a great what-to-eat-for-lunch solution. 

Chorizo Poblano Quesadillas with Lime Sriracha Slaw
serves 2 to 4, depending on appetite size

For the slaw:
4 cups thinly sliced red cabbage
2 Mexican grilling (fat green) onions, thinly sliced
1/2 poblano chili pepper, deseeded & julienned
1/4 cup Best Foods Mayonnaise (RL prefers Miracle Whip!)
2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 Tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
1 Tablespoon Sriracha (more or less to taste)
  1. Mix together mayonnaise, lime juice, vinegar and sriracha in a mixing bowl. 
  2. Add the cabbage, onions and poblano and toss to mix thoroughly. Set aside to let stand for ten minutes or more while you prepare the chorizo mix.
For the Chorizo filling:
3 chorizo links (I used Falls Brand precooked Basque chorizo)
1/2 poblano chili pepper, deseeded & julienned
1 small white onion, diced 
1 Tablespoon oil (if using precooked chorizo)
1 teaspoon ground chipotle chili pepper
1 Tablespoon dried cilantro
  1. Heat the oil in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Remove the casings from the chorizo links.
  2. Crumble the chorizo into the heated pan; add the remaining ingredients and cook over medium heat until the vegetables are softened and the meat is heated through. (If using uncooked chorizo, drain off the fat after the meat is fully cooked.) 
  3. Taste and adjust seasonings (add salt & pepper if you wish). Cover and keep warm while you heat the tortillas.
For the quesadilla:
4 large flour tortillas
2-3 fat radishes, thinly sliced
1 large Roma tomato, chopped
1/2 cup Cotija cheese, crumbled
fresh cilantro, rough chopped (optional)
sour cream, guacamole or diced avocado (optional)
  1. Use a nonstick skillet over medium heat and heat a tortilla on one side until warm, but not crisp. Remove to a plate while you heat a second tortilla.
  2. Layer half of each tortilla, warmed side up, with cheese, chorizo filling, radish slices, tomato chunks, cilantro and more cheese. Fold the open half of each tortilla over the filling and press down firmly to slightly compress the filling slightly (but not hard enough to split the tortilla along the fold).
  3. Place the 2 folded tortillas back in the heated, nonstick skillet, side by side. Heat, turning carefully once with a spatula, until each side is browned and beginning to crisp.
  4. Cut in half (optional) and serve immediately.

     I love to top quesadillas with a dollop of sour cream and a scattering of avocado chunks; RL prefers his without extra toppings.
     I cut my quesadilla in half and eat it with my fingers like a sandwich. RL opens his up, redistributes the filling, usually adds some taco sauce, and eats his with knife and fork (see above photo).
     What's your quesadilla style?

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