I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! I’m in the lobby of the Bright Angel lodge at the Grand Canyon right now sitting next to the fireplace, drinking hot chocolate, and taking advantage of the free internet! Apolinaras and my brother Richard braved a snow and ice covered slippery trail down into the canyon today, but since I’m a bit of a klutz, I decided to walk around the South rim with my parents. Talk about gorgeous views! Phoenix was very warm though, and we all had fun hiking up a rocky Camelback Mountain trail, where a festively decorated Christmas tree and bush greeted us at the top of the peak. Richard even left a little ornament on the tree! It’s been so great spending time with everyone!
Food wise, I’ve really been enjoying all the delicious Southwestern flavors, so I was inspired to share this easy and tasty quesadilla recipe. This isn’t an authentic recipe, but it’s still one of my favorites because two types of salsa are involved! The quesadillas are filled with salsa and cheddar cheese and then served with fresh Pico de Gallo on top. So delicious! I did make Christmas dinner (chicken parm and lemon garlic shrimp pasta) and brunch (egg casserole, bacon, and pastries) with a very limited supply of dishes and ingredients in our condo in Phoenix, but I already can’t wait to get back into my own kitchen and work on some ideas that have been brewing on our trip!
Chicken Salsa Quesadillas
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into small chunks
1 16-ounce jar salsa
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
1/4 cup chopped red onion
Juice of 1 lime
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 8-inch whole wheat tortillas
2 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Heat olive oil over medium high heat in a large nonstick skillet and sauté chicken for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently, or until no longer pink in the center. Mix cooked chicken with salsa in a large bowl.
Meanwhile, make the Pico de Gallo by mixing chopped tomatoes, red onion, lime juice, cilantro, and salt in a large bowl.
Preheat broiler. Place 3 tortillas on a large greased cookie sheet. Spread half the shredded cheese evenly on the tortillas; top with the chicken mixture, the remainder of the cheese, and the remaining 3 tortillas. Place quesadillas in the oven and broil for 2 to 5 minutes on each side, or until cheese is melted and quesadillas are heated through. Cut tortillas into 4 wedges and top with Pico de Gallo. Makes 8 servings.
Nutrition: 366 calories, 15.8g fat, 4.5g fiber, 32.5g protein per serving
Cost: $1.36 per serving