Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Chicken, Sweetcorn and Sweet Red Pepper Quesadillas

Evening friends. I have such a delicious, casual meal to share with you this evening. It's absolutely ideal for a summer lunch with friends, eaten at a rustic garden table with plenty of napkins available and tons of sweet chilli sauce! It even cuts up with a pizza cutter, so no awkward sliding of the surfaces together trying to cut it with a knife (if you own a pizza cutter, that is...). It is based on a very old BBC Good Food recipe which is no longer available, which I have made a litte more exciting by adding to and changing the original ingredients. Of course, to make a quesadilla, all you need are two tortillas, and whatever ingredients you feel like adding, so it doesn't take a genius to invent a recipe for one, but maybe this will inspire you to think up your own. Please note, this recipe was for two adults and two small children, so alter your ingredient amounts to suit the appetites of those for whom you are cooking.


Six tortillas
Two roasted and shredded chicken breasts
One red onion, thinly sliced
Slab of Gruyere cheese
Tin of sweetcorn, drained
Pack of sweet pointed red pepper, sliced
A bag of rocket


Once you have prepared all the ingredients as above, lay out three tortillas on the worksurface.

(You may at this point want to put a smallish frying pan on the hob to start heating up to a medium to high heat.)

Begin by grating half of the Gruyere over the tortillas. This will melt as they are heated and cause the tortillas and ingredients to bind together, so it's important to have enough left to grate over once all the other ingredients have been added.

You can then start to add the rest of the ingredients, beginning with the chicken...

..followed by the sweetcorn and peppers, distributed nice and evenly...

...then the red onion. Husb can't eat raw onion; he seems to have some kind of allergy to it. It makes feel slightly dizzy and out of sorts. The boys and I have it though.

Add a generous handful of rocket (I bet you're wondering how on earth this is going to stay together. Ahhh, the power of stretchy cheese!) 

Don't forget to season with salt and pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil.

Finish with a final grating of Gruyere.

 I didn't add rocket to the boys' as I knew they wouldn't deal with it very well; they haven't quite grown accustomed to the length and shape of salad leaves, and I don't press them, because they get plenty of other, easier for small people to eat, veggies in their other meals.

Once all the ingredients have been added, take the remaining tortillas and place them over the tops.

You now need to transfer the first quesadilla to the pre-heated frying pan. Just hold it together on opposite sides and carefully but quickly lift it over to the pan.

Leave it to cook for a couple of minutes until the underside has become golden. Then you need to turn it over. Now, I have a very easy method of turning it to share with you, but you'll have to forgive the photos because they are pretty...err...dire, to be honest. But I hope you get the idea.

First, place a dinner plate over the frying pan and hold it tightly with one hand whilst grasping the pan handle with the other.

Lift the pan and swiftly turn upside down whilst holding the plate tightly...

...and lift the pan up and off.

With the pan back on the hob, carefully drag the quesadilla across the plate and back into the pan to cook the other side.

If you have a pizza slice to hand, cut the quesadillas with it, otherwise you could use a breadknife, or simply serve it up with a knife and fork for the eaters to do the cutting.

This meal always goes down very well in our house, and sweet chilli sauce was simply made for it. 

You can dollop it immediately on top (like husb did to big Tonju's; rather unrefined in my opinion!)

You could open up each slice and painstakingly distribute your sauce into each segment.

Or you could make a space for your sauce by moving a segment, and simply pour it onto the plate - surely the most civilised solution?

 I like the pinwheel effect the pizza slice has created.

Easy to handle segments for small people (provided they don't decide to dismantle them...)

So there you have the perfect recipe for a sunny spring day. Add to or change the ingredients as you wish, to make it more to your taste, and enjoy, maybe with a refreshing glass of elderflower presse. 

Happy making and eating :)

xx Sam

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