Mexican cuisine is known for its varied flavors, wide use of spices and fresh vegetables, fruit and beans. Each region in Mexico offers its own traditional variety of food and flavors and they all differ greatly in cuisine and style of cooking. However, many of the Mexican dishes we eat outside of Mexico are often not the authentic Mexican cuisine. Generally it is a fusion of some kind and more often than not it has been adapted and Americanized to what we know as Tex-Mex.
I think I will classify my own dish in this category. It's not entirely an authentic Mexican dish but uses typical flavors and ingredients of Mexico. Quesadillas are something I often make to satisfy hungry mouths. They are versatile and can pretty much be filled with anything you have on hand. Quesadillas always come to the rescue when you are in desperate need of a quick dinner.
Being at the beginning of Summer Break we often have the house full of Soeren's buddies. Boys will be boys and are currently running wild like coyotes on the prairie. In between hockey games, Nintendo, bike riding and re-discovering the neighborhood they always come home hungry.
"Mum can: Ben, Tim, Tobias, Finn, Sebastian, Eric and Max stay for dinner?" Soeren asks innocently. I know if I peak around the corner, Ben, Tim, Tobias, Finn, Sebastian, Eric and Max are all standing waiting meekly for my answer. I have no choice.
"Sure they can!" my mind racing to answer the inevitable next question.
"What's for dinner?"
"Mexican!" it's always a crowd pleaser and this time it's no different. Eight happy faces run off with huge smiles all screaming "YAAAH!"
Me - I rummage in my pantry to see what ingredients I can forage that might qualify as Mexican.
Black Bean and Goat Cheese Quesadilla
Printable version of recipe here.
450g can black bean, washed and drained
1 large tomato - chopped
150g goat cheese, crumbled
1 medium sized red onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon red chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
handful cilantro/coriander leaves, chopped
sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
2 ripe avocados, pitted, peeled and cubed
juice of 1 lime
6 whole wheat tortillas
- Heat the 2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet on medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until fragrant and opaque - about 5 minutes.
- Add beans together with 1 teaspoon ground cumin, cinnamon and chili powder and stir to incorporate the spices. Throw in the chopped tomatoes and stir. Allow to cook for about 3 minutes to release the aromas of the spices, then add about 150 to 200 ml of water. Simmer, stirring occasionally until the water has evaporated - about 6-8 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Using the back of a fork mash just part of the bean mixture up to give a chunky mixture. Stir in half of the the cilantro/coriander leaves and season to taste.
- To make a quick guacamole put the avocado cubes, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, rest of the cilantro/coriander leaves and lime juice into a clean bowl and mash coarsely with the back of a fork or a potato masher. Season to taste. This will give you a nice chunky paste.
- To get the quesadillas going lightly brush or spray a skillet with oil and over medium heat place one of the tortillas in the skillet. Spread the black bean mixture over the tortilla, leaving about 1 com space along the edges. Scatter some crumbled goat cheese and cover with a second tortilla.
- Brown each side of the tortilla for approx. 2 minutes. Proceed in this manner until all the tortillas have been used. Cut the quesadillas into wedges and serve with a dollop of guacamole.
Serve this with a helping of this corn-coriander salad
Always a huge hit with the kids. They love the fact that they can simply pick these up with their hands and gobble them down without the unnecessary use of cutlery. They were scooping up the salad with the quesadillas! The next time I met a few of the mums, they asked what it was i served them for dinner. Their boys were craving the meal at home and wanted their mums to make it at home. I had to laugh when I went through the ingredient list and the mums looked at me, eyes wide open - "My son does not eat beans!" "My son does not eat avocados!" "My son never likes spices in his food!" "My son ate chili?". What can I say ladies "Yes you sons do eat all this stuff!" and here is the recipe for you to make at home.
It's not fiery hot - just piquant to give it a bit of oomph! The beans are creamy and the tomatoes gives the mixture a bit of tartness. The spices simply culminates the entire dish of perfectly.
As I am going over to Jenny's to the fiesta of the month I plan on taking a large batch of the black bean and goat cheese quesadillas with me. Hope you will join the Monthly Mingle party this month too. See you there!
You might like these from WFLH:
|Black Bean Chili with Saffron Rice and Papaya Guacamole||Cheese Quesadillas with Two Salsas - Fruity and Spicy|
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