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Sunday, July 11, 2010

Chicken Quesadillas

Black Bean Dip
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 red onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tbs fresh lime juice
1 tsp cumin
1 tbs balsamic vinegar
1 tbs EVOO
1 jalapeno, diced
Salt and pepper to taste

Spicy Fresh Salsa
5 tomatoes, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 serrano chili, diced
1 jalapeno, diced
Lime juice
Salt and pepper to taste

While some may consider it a snack, quesadillas also make a great dinner for a casual night. To make this dish special, I am going to make my own salsa and dip. Seems like many other people had the urge to go Tex-Mex that night too, since Whole Foods was out of cilantro! I survived without it, but if you have cilantro on hand, feel free to add to these recipes.

My dad is the salsa pro, he grows his own tomatoes and peppers and cans it every summer. I am going to try my hand at fresh salsa though. Finely chop up the tomatoes and add to a medium bowl. I just used regular tomatoes, but I would recommend plum. Then dice up half a red onion, garlic, serrano and jalapeno peppers and mix in with the tomatoes. You could leave the seeds out if you want the salsa less spicy. I tossed with the juice of one lime and seasoned with salt and pepper. Definitely tastier and fresher than any store-bought jar!

I had a can of black beans, so I wanted to use them for a dip instead of the usually sour cream or guacamole. Bean dip can be pretty bland, but I found this recipe through the Epicurious web site. I drained the black beans and added to the blender with the red onion, garlic, and jalapeno. Add the lime juice, vinegar, EVOO and cumin and blend until smooth. The cumin adds a nice subtle spice and the vinegar gives it some extra tang. It makes a lot, but this dip is great with just chips or crackers!

For the quesadillas, I seasoned thin sliced chicken breasts with salt, pepper, and lime juice and put on the grill with some red peppers. Once the chicken is cooked and the pepper are blistered, I set aside. Heat a pan and place a tortilla to warm one side. Flip over after one minute and add the sliced chicken and peppers and some grated Monterrey jack. Fold in half and cook until cheese is melted.

Serve warm with the salsa and bean dip.

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The Hungry Yuppies, Annie and Rich, are a young couple from CT who are self-proclaimed foodies. Annie is the chef, and Rich is her willing taste tester. Juggling a full time job in the city wasn't going to get in the way of Annie's love for cooking. It's about eating well whether you have just 30 minutes on a Monday night, or all day on a rainy Sunday.