Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Mushroom Poblano Quesadillas

Last night Ellie Krieger fell into my bathtub.  (Well, maybe not Ellie herself, exactly, but her book So Easy).  She came out dripping wet and I knew that her well worn pages would warp as they dried, but the page I had marked was no worse for the wear and as always, she provided me with a delightful foundation on which to build tonight's dinner.

My husband is a meat guy.  Except for rare occasions, dinner without meat is really not dinner in his eyes, and quesadillas are definitely not a meal.  Trying to pull off a meatless version of Ellie's Quesadilla for a quick dinner was going to be a tough one, but with most of the ingredients on hand I thought I'd give it a go.  And low and behold... it worked.

Whole wheat tortillas filled with hearty (meat-like) mushrooms served as the base for my quesadilla filling and seemed to beautifully absorb the southwestern spices sprinkled over them as they cooked.  Onions, cilantro and poblanos rounded out the filling portion of the recipe and combined perfectly with the melted cheeses wrapped in the tortilla.  Fresh pico-de-gallo spooned over a dollop of sour cream with a sprinkle of cilantro finished off the plate as I put the finishing touches on the meal.

Adding a wedge of avocado for garnish, I held my breath as I placed the quesadilla with a salad in front of my husband.  Sparking a little conversation about the day, he dug into his meal and after a few bites he put down his quesadilla, reaching for water.  Still holding my breath I finally exhaled as he commented, "This is really good."  And then moved on to the next topic of conversation.

He didn't say another word about the meal, and definitely never commented that the quesadilla didn't contain any meat.  Leaving the table he even picked up a small remaining slice from the cutting board - a sure sign of something that he likes.  Smiling he rolled up his sleeves and actually started on the dishes as we cleaned up for the night.

Thanks Ellie.  You've done it again.

Easy Mushroom Poblano Quesadillas
adapted from So Easy: Luscious, Healthy Recipes for Every Meal of the Week

1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 8 ounces  mushrooms, (about 3 cups)
  • 1 medium poblano pepper, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 2-4 Tbs cilantro
  • 4 (10-inch) whole-grain flour tortillas
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican cheese mix or Cheddar
  • scallions, chopped
  • avocado
  • sour cream
  • pico-de-gallo or salsa (a tomatillo salsa would be wonderful!)
Add the oil to a large skillet over medium heat.  When oil is warm, add the onion, mushrooms and poblano pepper and cook until the mushroom "water" has evaporated and the vegetables soften.  Add the garlic, spices (cumin through pepper), and cilantro cooking a minute or two until very fragrant.

Place another large skillet over medium high heat and oil pan lightly.  Lay a tortilla flat on the pan and add a handful of cheese over 1/2 of the tortilla.  Working quickly, add desired amount of the veggie mixture.  Sprinkle with more cheese and top with a sprinkle of chopped scallions.  Fold the tortilla in half and cook until the tortilla is browned and the cheeses are beginning to melt.  Flip the tortilla and cook an additional  few minutes until that side is browned and the cheese is fully melted.

Cut quesadillas in half and serve with your favorite garnishes and toppings... avocado, guacamole, sour cream, salsa and additional cilantro if desired.

Liv Life Note:  A handful of cooked chicken would be a wonderful addition to the quesadillas (as Ellie wrote the original recipe).   My husband fully enjoyed the amount of spices in the mixture, however I found the amounts to be a bit strong.  Adjust or not, according to your tastes.

Liv Life Note 2:  This versatile recipe is one of those where one can substitute what works for them and what they have on hand.  Don't like onion much?  Add less or eliminate it all together.  Love cilantro?  Add more.  etc.  Be creative and enjoy!


  1. Ok, I know I should be commenting on the dish itself, but I'm not sure I'll be able to get past: "he rolled up his sleeves and actually started on the dishes..." Seriously??

    I need to make these to see if that'll happen in my kitchen. Clean-up is usually guilt-inspired by me towards the others. This must really taste as good as it looks!

  2. Ok---talk about a shocking start to this post! I was laughing out loud! I hate it when that happens. I can't tell you how many foodie mags have bitten the dust in the bath. (Really, they're quite worthless after the dunking.)

    These look delicious btw.

  3. My guy isn't a fan of meatless meals either but I sneak them in whenever I can! These look so yummy!!

  4. My guy isn't a fan of meatless meals either but I sneak them in whenever I can! These look so yummy!!

  5. LOL @ the first line of the post... Glad the book survived! This is my kind of food... I love the ingredients & flavors you've used, Kim! I think I would love this for breakfast, lunch or dinner! :) Thanks for sharing!

  6. The quaesadilla looks fabulous - I would definitely devour it in one bite :D
    If possible ;)

    Choc Chip Uru
    Latest: Double Jaffa Fudge Cookies + More

  7. This looks/sounds wonderful - I think I could eat it any time of the day. If you invite me for lunch I will be sure to tell you how wonderful they are - I can already tell! :)

  8. Actions do speak louder than words! My husband does not really say much and I have to press him for his opinion.
    Your description as well as picture tells me that these quesadillas ares a winner. I may not be able to do the dishes, but at least I can vote-Buzz buzz! have a great day!

  9. These look great especially coz I love mushrooms. Would love to try them.

  10. I love quesadillas, and my hubby likes mushrooms, so ocassionally we have meatless meals . I have to try these. We have a rule, sort of, whoever cooks, then the other person cleans up. It works pretty well.
    Glad that your cookbook survived!

  11. Honestly, I love cookbooks that show their use and love...whether it comes from the kitchen or the bathtub :) This quesadilla looks fantastic!

  12. We are a mushroom family and since Tay is such a huge fan of quesadillas the guys have to deal with it once in awhile. :) Meatless or not! Sorry about your book. :( Thank goodness for books and whatever they do to make the ink not waterbased. :)

  13. that looks like a great quesadilla! i love the addition of mushrooms!

  14. This looks and sounds SOOO amazing! Unfortunately Patrick is a big hater of all things mushroom. HUGE bummer. I want to try these so bad though. Maybe I will just omit the mushrooms in his and leave the peppers in. He can deal with it right?!

    Have a great weekend and I cannot wait to see Liv's video!

  15. What an excellent idea to have mushrooms in a quesadillas :) I'll have to try that!

  16. Quesadillas are so wonderful and I love the poblano addition!! Buzz buzz!

  17. Mushrooms and poblano together- delish! This quesadilla looks so tasty.

  18. I don't blame for wanting to keep going with this recipe, even after it went for a bath! It looks delish!

  19. Love this! These quesadillas sound wonderful, I can't see why a meat eater wouldn't love them as well ;)! Hope your cookbook dried out...

  20. Your husband is too cute! This definitely makes the carnivore in me salivate this! Meat or not, this sounds like a killer dinner =)

  21. You had me at poblano... my personal favorite pepper!

  22. I had quesadillas last night and hubs had tacos with lots of mushrooms. I didn't have poblanos but I bet they would have made my version better. Was using up leftovers from the fridge. Looking at your pictures, I think I might have to have another for lunch!

  23. Oh I love every ingredient! A perfect way to spice up the last remaining meatless fridays for lent. It starts to get a little boring by the end.

  24. This looks so extremely yummie!!!


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