Thursday, November 19, 2009

Cheese and Avocado Quesadillas - a Mexican hit

Definition: Quesadillas are a Mexican snack consisting of cheese cooked in a flour or wheat tortilla. In fact, roughly translated in Spanish, queso is cheese, and dilla is tortilla.

Lately, I have tried the quesadillas from one of the Mexican fast food places that have sprung up like shady sombreros. However, I’ve found them a bit lacking in flavour and substance, so the next best thing is to make your own. This is no real hardship, as quesadillas are simple to make, and unlike tortillas and burritos, the ingredients do not have to be cooked beforehand. While we are on the topic, quesadillas also differ from tortillas and burritos in that they are usually folded, not wrapped.

So here is my interpretation of the quesadilla. And while taking advantage of the ‘no pre-cooked ingredients’ adage, I am aware that during preparation, this quesadilla looks somewhat like a pizza.

Cheese and Avocado Quesadillas
The ingredients here are for 1 quesadilla. Serve 1 to 2 quesadillas per person, depending on their appetite.

2 soft flour tortillas
2 tblsp store-bought tomato salsa (mild or hot, depending on preference)
½ an avocado, sliced
1 large handful of spinach or rocket leaves
15-20g (about ¼ cup) cheddar cheese, grated
Sour cream and extra salsa, to serve

1.  Heat a non-stick frypan over medium-high heat. Sprinkle or spray pan with a little olive oil.
2.  Place one flour tortilla on a plate and top with the salsa, avocado, spinach and cheese.
3.  Put the other tortilla on top and place the whole thing into the frypan.
4.  Press down on the quesadilla with a spatula while it cooks for 2-3 minutes, until the bottom becomes slightly golden and crisp.
5.  Spray a bit of oil on the top of the quesadilla before turning it over and pressing and cooking for another minute or so.
6.  Transfer to a plate and serve with sour cream and more salsa.

Health tip: I used 'reduced fat' tortillas (El Paso brand), and they tasted great.

Marvel at how the quesadilla resembles a pizza at this stage. 
You could cook it in the oven if you want, I suppose.

But I cooked the quesadilla in a frypan.

Olé and ¡Buen apetito!
Serve with sour cream and salsa


  1. Love quesadillas! Such a great alternative to cheese on toast and is also an excellent late night snack. Come to think of it, I have an avocado in the fridge right now... =p

  2. You're lucky I wasn't hanging around your kitchen, as those nice big chunks of avo may well have mysteriously disappeared while you weren't paying attention.

    Great easy tasty dish! Good to know the lower fat tortillas are nice, too (even if that means you'll let yourself add extra cheese, hehe)

  3. mmm yum i love quesadillass but have never made before ooh baby i cant wait to make some with um extra cheese hehe

  4. I love Love quesadillas! So simple but so yummilicious. I love the photos too babe!

  5. Ooh yum. I love how you fried them in the pan. I saw the last pic and my eyes lit up! These are perfect for summer as well... I'm going to make these soon! Thanks!!

  6. I'm loving the latin flare to your recipes lately. They make me hungry just looking at them!

  7. These sound nice and simple, and avocado and salsa would make them so tasty! It's great to hear the low fat tortillas taste good too.

  8. hi Conor - haha, I went for the low-fat tortillas thinking exactly the same thing -more cheeeeese!

    hi mlle delicieuse - quesilladas sort of seem healthier, don't they? Maybe because you don't have to add butter like you have to with toast.

    hi chocolatesuze - I can imagine a quesillada made by you - it would be so full of cheese you couldn't flip it, hehe!

    hi penny - thanks, I tried to cook and photograph everything before it got dark, but missed it by that much...

    hi Maria - I know, I only realised the Latin link when you pointed it out. Glad you like it!

    hi Betty - they are so easy to make. And yes, perfect for summer when you don't want to spend too much time in front of a hot stove or oven.

    hi Michele - what's wrong with Bega?! Actually, I like it because it comes in smaller resealable bags.

    hi Arwen - I was a bit slack and got premade salsa, but it was really nice with the fresh avocado. And the cheese, of course!

  9. Harriet from CarltonNovember 28, 2009 at 4:28 PM

    Not sure bega and connoisseur of food would go hand in hand lol