Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Turkey, black bean & pepper quesadillas with spicy apricot salsa

I don't know how it's possible, but I always seem to forget about quesadillas.

Allow me to pause while you pinch yourself.  You're not dreaming.

Standard bread sandwiches are just more familiar and, therefore, easier for my brain to recall in stressful times.  Stressful times = when my stomach is sending my brain impatient and borderline angry messages demanding sustenance.

But, every now and then, the universe sends me a sign puts an entire show on TV about quesadillas and the nudges me in the right direction.

As is the case these days, I was running on the treadmill and had Food Network on to placate me, mile after mile.  Some guy I didn't recognize was waxing on and on about the best quesadilla he ever had.  I couldn't tell you what was on it because I started hallucinating... about the quesadilla I wanted to make.

You see, I roasted a massive whole turkey breast over the weekend, and we had oodles of leftovers.  Matt may disagree, but one can only have so many cold turkey sandwiches.  Tasty but a little boring after the third or fourth one.

But quesadillas?  Have you ever heard someone say, "No, thanks.  I don't want a delicious hot and cheesy quesadilla."  I'm guessing you haven't.  That's because quesadillas are hot, cheesy, and delicious.

Especially this quesadilla and this salsa.  Oh, the salsa!

Tortillas are stuffed with shredded roasted turkey, crunchy green bell peppers, tender black beans and gooey Monterey Jack cheese.

Can we talk about how underrated and underused Monterey Jack cheese is?  It's mild and creamy, not to mention a melting superstar, making it a perfect cheese for hot and toasty quesadilla.

Once seared and cut, these quesadilla wedges are ready to dunk in fresh salsa.  Lick it off the quesadilla, the spoon, and the bowl because this stuff is addictive!  Savory and sweet with just the right amount of heat.

Not only was dinner delicious, it was memorable, too.

Dear quesadillas, I'm sorry I always forget about you after Thanksgiving.  I promise things will be different next year.  Please just don't make me eat anymore plain turkey sandwiches.  Love, Katy

One year ago: Slow cooker Santa Fe chicken

Turkey, Black Bean & Pepper Quesadillas with Spicy Apricot Salsa
-serves 2

4 10-inch tortillas
6 ounces (about 3/4 cup) cooked, shredded turkey breast
1/2 cup thinly sliced green bell peppers
1/2 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
3/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided into 4 portions
1/2 cup your favorite salsa
2 Tablespoons apricot preserves
Few dashes of hot sauce

Preheat Griddler with flat sides of plates facing up or large nonstick skillet.  In a small bowl, combine salsa, apricot preserves and hot sauce to taste and set aside.

Place one tortilla on cooking surface and quickly sprinkle 1/4 of the cheese on tortilla.  Top with 1/2 of the beans, peppers, and turkey, evenly layered on surface of tortilla.  Top with another 1/4 of the cheese and second tortilla.  Close Griddler (or top quesadilla with a heavy saucepan or plate if using skillet), and cook for 5 to 6 minutes until heated through and cheese is bubbling.

Remove quesadilla to a cutting board to rest.  Meanwhile, repeat steps to make second quesadilla with remaining ingredients.  After quesadillas have rested for a few minutes and cheese has cooled, cut each into 6 wedges and serve with salsa.  Enjoy!


  1. The apricot salsa sounds really good and simple. That is what I like, simple! PS, your writing is very entertaining :)

    1. You are sweet -- thank you :) Enjoy the quesadillas!