Welcome to my world!

I've developed a passion for cooking since childhood, but in the past six years, that passion has grown into a geeky obsession. I love cooking, baking, and most importantly, sharing the love of food with family and friends. I invite you along on my journey of food discovery and passion.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Quick Quesadillas for Back-to-School Dinner

Dallas-area students started back to school this week and I've seen many of my friends struggling with fitting all of evening activities into already full days.  So, what do you do if family dinner is a priority?  No, do NOT hit the drive thru 4 times in a week (if you can help it).  Instead, whip up a meal in about 10 - 15 minutes.  Yes, I said 10 minutes! :)

A great go-to meal is a quesadilla.  You can make it vegetarian with refried beans or canned black beans (drained and rinsed first!), use leftover meats (bbq brisket, cooked chicken, or even ham), whatever type of cheese you like, and veggies to your liking.  Served with a side of carrot and celery sticks or apple slices, you have a great meal.

But what about other types of quesadilla-inspired options?  I personally love Italian food, and I frequently make a dinner panini.  I thought, why not take the idea of a quesadilla, but make it Italian-style (you can go Asian, Mexican, Greek, whatever)?  Instead of tortillas, I used flat bread, usually found near the deli or bakery in a grocery store.  Prosciutto (Italian ham), provolone, and mozzarella combine into melty perfection and pair perfectly with crispy veggies on the side.  While the sandwiches were baking, I peeled and sliced a cucumber and served it sprinkled with just salt and pepper. 

No real recipe to this, just improvise with what you have. Here's what I did:

Flat Bread Quesadilla Sandwiches

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
You can warm up and slightly toast the bread (flat bread, pitas, or tortillas) by placing it in a pan over medium-high heat just until heated through and lightly browned in spots
Spread mustard, mayo, pesto or whatever you like onto one side of a flat bread. 
Layer on the cheese and meat toppings (ham, salami, turkey or what you like or have around)
Fold over bread (to a half moon shape).
Place on a baking sheet, then bake until the cheese is melted and sandwich is heated through, about 5 - 8 minutes.
Cut into wedges and serve.

Happy eating!

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