- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 3, 2006

Life goes on after the holidays, but whereas we might have been abuzz with energy last month, we now wish we could just snap our fingers and have our imaginary butler come forth with simple, healthy hot meals that magically fill us up and trim us down as we settle into the bleakness of winter.

No butler at your house, either? On to Plan B. How about a quesadilla supper that’s pure, light, delicious and easy? In fact, this affordable dish covers many bases. The ingredients are accessible, and it provides a terrific stealth vegetable opportunity, which is great for adults and children alike.

It’s not that we don’t know the value of consuming our daily quota of vegetables. We all need ideas for getting more vegetables into our diets, and this recipe is a good solution. It transforms plain cooked broccoli into something exciting and satisfying, allowing us to slip in at least two of our five-a-day without fanfare or fuss.

Broccoli quesadillas

4 burrito-size flour tortillas

2 packed cups grated Monterey Jack cheese (about 1/4 pound)

1½ to 2 cups (possibly more) chopped, cooked broccoli, at room temperature


Cooked pinto or black beans


Sour cream

Guacamole or plain mashed avocado

Place a griddle or a heavy skillet over medium heat and wait about 3 minutes. Add a flour tortilla (or two; whatever fits) and sprinkle each tortilla with about ½ cup cheese.

Divide broccoli between tortillas, sprinkling it over the cheese, then divide the remaining cheese over the broccoli. (You also can add a few tablespoons of cooked beans at this point, if desired.) Top with a second tortilla and cook for several minutes, until the bottom of the lower tortilla is a light golden color.

Flip it over and cook on the second side until the bottom surface matches the first side. By this point, the cheese should be melted completely. Remove from pan and slice into 6 or 8 wedges. Serve hot or warm, accompanied by salsa, sour cream and/or guacamole or plain avocado, if desired. Makes 2 to 3 servings.




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