everyday food, kids favorite, mexican, monday dinner
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Chicken and Corn Quesadillas with Three Bean Salad and Fresh Tomato Salsa

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These are great all year round, but especially during the summer when fresh corn is available. I always make a double batch and freeze the fully cooked quesadillas; they can be reheated in the toaster oven. Sneak in the spinach (kids won’t notice!)…this recipe makes 5 burrito sized quesadillas.

Quesadillas

2 chicken breasts, bone in, skin on*

3 tbsp olive oil (1 tbsp for chicken breasts, 2 tbsp for filling)

1 small onion, finely chopped

2 gloves of garlic, finely minced

2 tbsp cilantro, chopped (optional)

1 1/2 cups of corn, fresh if available

2 cups of fresh baby spinach (shredded)

1 tsp kosher salt

freshly ground black pepper to taste

1/2 tsp ancho chili powder

1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 cup of salsa

3 cups of grated cheese (I use a mix of Monterey Jack and Sharp cheddar)

10 burrito size tortillas

olive oil cooking spray

* Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Place the chicken breasts, skin side up, on a baking sheet and rub them with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Set aside until cool. When the chicken is cool, remove meat from the bones and discard the skin and bones. Cut the chicken into small dice or shred. Can be made the day before.

Make chicken and veggie filling: heat 2 tbsp olive oil and sauté onion over medium heat for 5 minutes, add garlic, cilantro, corn and spinach. Cook for another couple of minutes. Add seasonings and spices. Stir to combine. Add chicken and salsa and cook until moisture from salsa evaporates, about another 5 minutes. This can also be made in advance.

Heat a frying pan slightly and spray with olive oil cooking spray and lay a flour tortilla in the skillet. Then build the quesadillas by laying grated cheese on the bottom tortilla, and then arranging the chicken and veggie mixture. Top with a little more grated cheese and top with a second tortilla.

When the tortilla is golden on the first side, spray top with olive oil cooking spray; carefully flip the quesadilla to the other side. Continue cooking until the second side is golden. Repeat with the remaining tortillas and fillings.

Cut each quesadilla into wedges and serve with Three Bean Salad and fresh salsa.

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Fresh Tomato Salsa

4 large tomatoes

1/3 cup cilantro

1/4 cup finely chopped white onion

1 small fresh jalapeño, finely chopped, including seeds, or more to taste

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice, or more to taste

1 tsp kosher salt

Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl. This salsa keeps in the refrigerator for a couple of days. Leftovers are great with lightly salted tortilla chips.

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Three Bean Salad

1/2 cup olive oil

juice of 2 limes

2 tbsp red vinegar

1 tbsp sugar

2 gloves garlic, finely minced

1 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper

1/2 tsp ancho chili powder

1/2 tsp cumin

one 15 oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed

one 15 oz can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed

one 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 red pepper, small dice

1 red onion, finely chopped

1/2 cup fresh cilantro or to taste, chopped

Whisk together olive oil, lime juice, vinegar, sugar, garlic, salt, black pepper, ancho chili powder and cumin.

Add remaining ingredients and toss to coat. Refrigerate until chilled or ready to serve.

Makes 8-10 appetizer servings

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