Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Walnut and Spinach Quesadillas (as tweaked by moi)

Having a teenager who suddenly decides he wants to be a vegetarian is a challenge I hadn't anticipated. I confess: I feel a little betrayed that my home cooking isn't cutting it, but I know it has nothing really to do with me. Trying to develop Vegetarian dishes that wow - we tried out tofu the other night: marinated it with a host of savory flavors and then tried it seared and added to stir fry, and then we rolled some in panko to see how it differed. Apparently marinating makes the tofu much more tender and melt-in-your-mouth.Our most recent foray into Vegetarian cooking was Walnut-Spinach Quesadillas. I found the recipe online but it called for making a Walnut-Black Olive Butter, which frankly, didn't blow my skirt up, so we improvised.

The Walnut and Spinach Quesadillas were a lot better tasting than I thought they would be (Resident doubter here, reporting for duty), and the Professor was right there, doing his part in making them.

We started with:
a heated cast iron skillet with some lovely extra virgin olive oil added to it,
2 cloves of garlic, pressed
half an onion, chopped semi-fine
6-8 baby bella mushrooms (was about a cup and a half)
1 and a quarter cups walnuts, chopped roughly (tip of your pinkie size)
salt and pepper
parsely flakes

We sauteeed this until it was tender, adding a tiny bit of balsamic vinegar(for meatiness)
and a quarter cup of water near the end, to help the walnuts soften - the water was fully absorbed before we took it off the heat. This concoction went into a bowl to cool while we cleaned up the skillet and got it ready again (more lovely olive oil)

On a cutting board we assembled the quesadillas, using:
1 flour tortilla
handful of shredded mozzarella (I think gorgonzola would be killer in this as well, btw)
serving spoonful of walnut/mushroom stuff
handful of fresh spinach leaves (take the big stems off when you wash this)

Grill in skillet until brown and crispy on both sides, remove and cut in half.

We served this with fresh sliced local tomatoes and it was delicious!
As a non-Vegetarian, I was pleasantly surprised by how meaty and satisfying this dish was.
Thumbs up!!!

Sadly, no picture this time: we ate them too fast!


Karen Jensen said...

Yum! I may just have to try this!

we_be_toys said...

I guess I should have said that this recipe made 8 quesadillas - we ran out of walnut mushroom goodness before we ran out of tortillas, spinach, or cheese - otherwise we would have made more!!!

Arizaphale said...

Hats off to you for taking on board the vego thing. The BA is a meat tolerator...ie she will eat meat if it is chicken. With no bones. This makes life very tricky when husband and boys are all dyed in the wool, red meat lovers! I could certainly go some quesadillas, if they were with ANY OTHER kind of nut. Somewhere in my childhood I developed an aversion to walnuts which persists to this day. I think it was because my mum used to put them on top of coffee cakes, which I never liked either!

BrightenedBoy said...

That sounds amazing and the tofu thing seems wonderful, too. I could never be a vegetarian but I love dishes like this.

You'll have to take photos next time!

By the way, it's great to see you blogging again.

Lori Brusse said...

This sounds so delicious. I am definitely going to try. Wish you had a picture, I would have put on my Pinterest to reference later!

Abigailj4165 said...

Looks yummy! Cant wait to try :)

Anonymous said...

Sounds delicious, I just want to try this out.

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Suresh Prasad said...

I will try it.