It’s summertime and for many, it’s all about eating light. I know I tend to pass up those heartier meals because they are hard to stomach during the summer heat. It’s also
bikini swimsuit season and I’m sure, for many, “food babies” are on the list of things to avoid. While I’m not really concerned with said food baby (tankini’s and one pieces, thank yooou), I am all for eating lighter, even meatless meals.
So often I rely on a meat as a base for a meal. Growing up, meat always played the main character of a meal and as an adult I’m trying to break out of that habit. So today I want to share a veggified twist on one of my favorite meals; quesadillas! It incorporates some of my all time favorite vegetables. I live for onions, mushrooms, and avocados. And tomatoes are slooowly making their way into the mix. Adding tomatoes to this dish was a bold move considering they are one of my least favorite veggies. I can’t eat them alone, but accompanied by a variety of veggies, they work.
A fun fact that I learned: Keep tomatoes out of the fridge! The cold temperatures rid them of their flavor and transforms their texture in just a few days. Instead, put them in a bowl lined with a paper towel with the stems pointing upward. The most tender part of the tomato is directly around the stem, which is most likely to bruise and lead to rotting. Also be sure to store away from heat sources and direct sunlight. To think, after all these years, I’ve been doing it all wrong! Random, I know!
Anyway… I hope you enjoy this recipe. I can see these coming along in the picnic basket soon!
- 3 sweet yellow onions, sliced
- 1 cup sliced cremini mushrooms
- 1 tsp chipotle pepper
- 1 tsp cumin
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- 1½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 large ripe avocado, chilled and sliced
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced
- 2 large flour tortillas
- 2 limes
- Olive oil
- Salt (I use garlic salt), to taste
- Cracked black pepper, to taste
- In a pan, preheat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium low heat and add sliced onions. Once the onions become translucent, add a few pinches of salt and cracked black pepper. Continue cooking until onions caramelize. This may take up to an hour depending on preference and patience. Stir every 5 to 10 minutes. Periodically add a few tablespoons of water to the pan if the onions start to stick. Once the onions are thoroughly cooked, season them with chipotle pepper.
- Remove the onions from the pan and set them aside. Increase the heat to medium high and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan. Add the sliced mushrooms. Brown the mushrooms for several minutes. Turn them a few times, allowing them to get a crispy golden brown crust. Season them with a pinch of salt, cracked black pepper, cumin and cinnamon. Remove the mushrooms from the pan and set them aside with the caramelized onions.
- Wipe out the pan, and heat on medium high. Add a tablespoon of olive oil. Place tortilla down in pan and quickly layer half of the tortilla with cheese, caramelized onions and sauteed mushrooms, avocado slices, cilantro, and tomatoes. Using a spatula, fold the other side of the tortilla over the cheese and veggies. Press down to make the quesadilla stick. Let cook for 30 seconds and remove from pan. Repeat for the 2 quesadilla.
- Cut each quesadilla in thirds and serve with cilantro and lime.
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