I love quesadillas, that authentic Mexican treat that I first enjoyed overlooking Boothbay Harbor in Maine. It was the day before my 21st birthday and Sandy Larsen née Bugbee took me out to dinner. I believe that evening’s special involved crab and brie. Authenticity aside, it was delicious, and certainly freed me to think beyond chicken and cheese.
Just about anything tastes good grilled between two tortillas with hot melted cheese, including, it turns out, peaches. Sounds funny, right, but think about the joy of peach salsa over grilled chicken or with salty tortilla chips. Peaches are a natural with sharp Amish cheddar, mild Asian Barbecue sausage from Canales Quality Meats, warm cumin and bright red onion between hearty corn tortillas.
I cook the sausage and onions and assemble these ahead of time for entertaining. Stack them in the fridge, pull them out and fry them right up. A pizza cutter is your best friend for slicing these without pushing all the filling out. No salsa is needed, but this smoky peach salsa would gild the lily* beautifully.
*We don’t us phrases like “gild the lily” nearly often enough anymore. “Right as rabbits” is a bit neglected too.
- 3 Asian Barbecue sausages*
- 1 red onion, diced
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1 tbs Sherry vinegar
- 8 – 10 6” corn or wheat tortillas
- 2 – 3 cups grated Cheddar cheese
- 3 peaches, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup chopped basil
- Olive oil
*No Asian Barbecue sausages on hand? Sauté any good pork sausage and add a tsp of Chinese 5 Spice powder and a tablespoon of soy sauce while cooking.
- Squeeze the sausage from the casings and sauté over medium heat, breaking it up with a spoon until crumbled, browned and cooked through. Remove with a slotted spoon and reserve.
- Add 1 tbs olive oil to pan and sauté onion until softened and edges begin to brown. Return sausage to pan. Season with cumin, vinegar salt and pepper.
- Layer one corn tortilla with cheese, cooked sausage, peach slices, onions and basil. Top with more cheese and a second tortilla.
- Fry quesadillas in 1 tbs oil over medium heat, about 3 minutes per side, turning once when the tortilla begins to brown in spots.
- With a pizza cutter, slice into wedges and serve.