Mexican Grilled Cheese Sandwich – Quesadilla – recipe

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That’s right.  A quesadilla is basically a grilled cheese sandwich.  It may not look like a grilled cheese sandwich or taste like one, but …

In keeping with the grilled cheese sandwich theme, making a quesadilla is about as easy as it gets.  Toast a flour tortilla in a frying pan, place some shredded cheese on the top, fold over to create a half-moon shape, wait for the cheese to melt.  Eat with some salsa.

8 oz of shredded cheese (see notes)

6 inch flour tortillas (see notes)

olive oil

Heat a frying pan using medium-high heat.  Spread a little olive oil in the pan.  Place a tortilla in the pan.  Toast one side of the tortilla until the top starts to “bubble” up.  Flip the tortilla over.  Place about an ounce of cheese on top of the tortilla.  Toast for about 15 seconds longer.  Using a spatula, fold the tortilla over to form a half-moon shape.  Press down on the tortilla so it doesn’t unfold.  Flip the tortilla over to finish toasting the top half.  Turn the burner down and/or remove from the burner, cover the frying pan for about 20 to 30 seconds to finish melting the cheese.  Remove from the pan.  Place the burntest side down on the plate.  A little burnt is part of learning.  Serve with salsa.

Notes

I used a blend of Monterey Jack, Cheddar, Queso Quesadilla and Asadero Cheeses.  It was on sale for about $2.  Same with the flour tortillas.  They were on sale for about $1 a package of 10.  Depending on how much cheese you put on each, you should end up with from 6 to 8 quesadillas.  The salsa is my own home brew.

Toasting the tortillas has a bit of a learning curve to it.  If you oil the pan when the pan is cold, you’ll need to spread it around.  I used the tortilla itself to spread the oil over the bottom of the pan.  If the pan is hot, all you’ll need to do is tilt the pan around and let the olive oil coat the pan that way.  There are two heat settings used while cooking the quesadilla.  The tortilla is toasted on medium-high heat.  The final melting of the cheese is done on low heat, or more appropriately, on no heat, as just the heat from the pan when the pan is covered is usually enough to melt the cheese.   Controlling the heat so you don’t set off the smoke detector while the tortilla is being carbonized (surprisingly, carbonized is a word) is the second learning curve.  Using an electric stove, turning down the heat wasn’t good enough, I actually had to remove the pan from the burner as an electric burner continues to transfer too much heat to the pan even after being lowered.  But the real trick to the last step is placing a cover over the frying pan.  It doesn’t have to be an exact fit, just a cover.    Once you get a rhythm, the cycle time for each quesadilla is about 2 to 3 minutes.

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