BBQ Recipe Secrets

Grilled Quesadillas: A Wonderful Treat

Mexican food and grilling go very well together sometimes. Here's a great example: grilled quesadillas.

Friday, December 08, 2017

While grilled quesadillas aren't typical barbecue fare, they're easy to cook, and the grilling itself adds a piquant flavor that indoor quesadillas somehow lack. In my book, they taste best (and possible more authentic) when grilled over mesquite, but gas and charcoal do the trick, too.

Quesadilla Basics

If you're not familiar with quesadillas, then what cave have you been hiding in for the past few decades? No, seriously, you're not alone. Years ago, my family and I used to wax enthusiastic over the tortilla-and-cheese "Mexican pizzas" my sister used to bake in the microwave.

Only later did we discover that she had independently invented quesadillas.

They're easy to make: just slap cheese and other fillings onto a flour tortilla and either put a second tortilla over the top, or fold the first over. Heat until the cheesy is nice and gooey, and you've got your quesadilla.

Cautious Grilling

A few pointers before we continue. Be very careful when grilling tortillas, because they can catch fire easily. You'll need to use medium to medium-high heat, and watch them closely. Don't step away from the grill even for a minute, or you might end up with quesadilla flambé.

I assure you that, as with most things, soot detracts from the flavor.

The Recipe Itself

Now let's get down to the nitty-gritty! Any eight-inch flour tortillas will do for your BBQ quesadillas, as long as they're fresh and flexible. I don't recommend corn tortillas, because they're likely to break if you fold them over. If you do use them, employ the layering method instead.

Here are the makings of a great filling for 4-8 quesadillas, depending on your preferred method of construction:

1 diced tomato
2 green onions, thinly sliced (include the greens, if you like)
3 jalapeño peppers, thinly sliced (wear gloves here)
1/4 cup of fresh cilantro
1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin
1-1/2 cups of your favorite grated cheese
1/2 cup of sour cream
Black pepper

The Procedure

Mix everything except the salt and pepper together in a big bowl; then add the salt and pepper according to taste. If you prefer, you can lightly spice the mix and leave the diners to add the salt and pepper to their own tastes.

Next, construct the quesadillas. Smear the mix generously atop a tortilla and then either fold it over, to make a half-moon shaped quesadilla, or add another tortilla on top, to make a full round one. In my experience the folded kind hold up better on the grill.

Carefully place your tasty creations on the grill, and cook them 2-3 minutes per side. Then pull them off the grill, and enjoy your grilled quesadillas while they're still warm!

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