Friday, April 1, 2011

Spicy Chorizo Quesadillas

I've been really busy lately, teaching several classes in the past week and a half  and have really not had a lot of time to cook or experiment at home.  Most of the "meals" I've been making have not really been meals, but rather snacks.  Today has been no different.  I still have a half of a package of that chorizo left that I picked up from Trader Joe's and really need to use it up.  When I bought it I thought for sure I could use it up in one meal, but the chorizo has a strong flavor and spiciness on its own and you really don't need a lot of it.  So with that thought in mind, and a desire to make something as easy and quick as possible, I came up with quesadillas.  I still have some daiya left from a block I bought at work and should probably also use that up, so the spicy chorizo quesadilla was born.

The Hubby loved it and ate two whole quesadillas, which amounts to about 16 slices!  Have I said yet that my Hubby is a previous baseball player and is easily a foot taller than me and eats so much sometimes I can hardly believe it?!  When his Dominican cousin comes over (who is 6" 5"!), forget about it - I can never make enough food to fill their bellies!  Here is the recipe I made, which comes together and cooks very quickly.

Spicy Chorizo Quesadillas

Cheesy Melty Spicy Quesadillas! 

Serves 3-4 as an appetizer

6 Burrito size tortillas

2 cups daiya, shredded
1/2 medium onion, small diced (1/2 cup)
1 small green pepper, small diced (1/2 cup)
1 small red pepper, small diced (1/2 cup)
1 small roma tomato, small diced (1/2 cup)
1 jalapeno, minced
1/4 package Trader Joe's soy chorizo
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
pinch red pepper flakes
pinch sea salt

To serve:
Vegan sour cream

1.  Start by shredding the daiya, or if you purchased it already shredded, place it in a large bowl. 
2.  Chop all the veggies - it is very important to chop them as small as you can so that each bite will have an equal amount of veggies, cheese and chorizo.  Place in the bowl with the daiya.
3.  Add the chorizo, black pepper, red pepper flakes and sea salt.  Using your hands, toss all the ingredients together until well combined.  It should have turned a light red color from the spices and oil in the chorizo.
4.  Heat a large pan over low-medium heat.  Spray or drizzle a tiny bit of oil over the surface of the pan - this is to help the quesadilla turn golden, but  isn't necessary. 
5.  Place one tortilla directly on the pan and spread 1/3 of the veggie cheese mix evenly over the surface, being careful not to place it too closely to the edges or it will burn.  Place the second tortilla over top, pressing firmly so it adheres. 

Cheese Chorizo mixture spread on top of tortilla in pan on stove

 6.  Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the cheese starts to melt and the side cooking begins to turn golden.  Carefully flip, making sure to place your hand on the uncooked side to make sure none of the ingredients come out when it is flipped.  Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, or until cheese is completely melted and the outside is golden.  Repeat with the remaining tortillas and filling.
7.  Cut each tortilla into 8 wedges, serving immediately.  Set up small bowls of the guacamole, salsa and sour cream to serve.

One of these days I would really like to try again to make homemade vegan cheese.  I have several of the uncheese cookbooks and made a few of the cheese recipes when I first became vegan.  It is such an interesting thing to be able to make your own vegan cheese!   I've been telling myself this for weeks now - most of the recipes are made by dissolving agar into water and then blending it with cashews and other ingredients to give it the desired flavor.  One day soon I am going to try it again.  Maybe over the next couple days because I do miraculously have three days off in a row, which never happens!  A mini vacation!



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