Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Salsa Stoup and Double Decker Baked Quesadillas

Recipe courtesy: Rachael Ray's 365: No Repeats...

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of pan, plus some for brushing tortillas
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped I used a jar of sliced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 large onion, chopped
3 ribs celery, chopped with greens
3 cloves garlic, chopped
Salt and pepper
1 (28-ounce) can stewed tomatoes
1 can crushed tomatoes (I used diced)
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro or flat-leaf parsley (I used dried cilantro)
6 flour tortillas, 6 to 8 inches (I used whole wheat tortillas)
1 cup shredded Cheddar, available in pouches on dairy aisle
3 scallions, chopped (I omitted)
4 ounce brick Pepper Jack or chipotle cheese, shredded, about 1 cup
Sour cream, to pass at table

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

Heat a medium soup pot over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan and the jalapenos, bell pepper, onions, celery and garlic. Season with salt and pepper then saute veggies 5 minutes, add tomatoes, crushed tomatoes and stock and bring soup to a bubble. Reduce heat to a simmer and stir in cilantro.

Paint 1 side of 2 tortillas with oil and place them next to each other, oiled side down, on a large cookie sheet. Mix cheddar with scallions and divide the cheese between the tortillas evenly. Top with another tortilla and top each of those with equal amounts of Pepper Jack cheese. Set the last tortillas on top and brush tops with extra-virgin olive oil. Cook 10 minutes in the oven to melt cheese and crisp up tortillas. Cool quesadillas 5 minutes to set then cut each quesadilla into 6 pieces.

Serve bowls of stoup with 3 wedges quesadilla along side each bowlful and sour cream for topping either.

This was a pretty good meal. The "stoup" was a little thinner than I expected, and I added way too much in terms of the jalapenos, but it was tasty. I did package some leftover for lunch tomorrow. The quesadillas were a little bland, in that it was only two types of cheese, but between the two of us, we ate all of it (despite the recipe's making four servings). Maybe we'll add some chicken or something to the quesadillas in the future.

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