Jamaican jerk chicken quesadilla with grilled avocado-mango salsa
Today’s post is an end of the day on Friday bonus. Nothing too special about the dish because it’s a quesadilla. And as comedian Jim Gaffigan brilliantly puts it, all Mexican food is tortilla, cheese, meat or vegetables. When you think about it, most of it really is.
But rather than do the basic, I took some grilled avocado-mango salsa, which comes from Hubert Keller’s Burger Bar and an earlier post on the site, some chicken and some spices to make a Caribbean-flavored experience. I guess the idea here is that even with something that’s basically Mexican, you can do whatever you want to find the perfect flavor combinations. Make it a cheeseburger. Go Asian. You don’t have to limit yourself to a tortilla with cheese, meat or vegetables.
Making a quesadilla is incredibly easy, though my process was made that much simpler due my quesadilla maker ownership. Unlike some gimmicks though, you don’t even come close to needing this if you want to make this dish. But never, ever make this meal in the microwave. It’s soggy, rubbery, and you’re robbing yourself.
5-6 tbsp. grilled avocado-mango salsa
1/2 - 1 cup pepper jack cheese, shredded
2 chicken breasts, chopped
Start by chopping the chicken finely and seasoning with oil, salt, pepper and jerk seasoning. Add oil to a hot pan, then drop in the chicken. The smaller the pieces, the quicker they will cook, so be very careful not to leave them in too long. When cooked, transfer to a paper towel to drain.
Brush some oil on both tortillas before arranging. This will let the oil soak in and should help the tortilla crisp as it cooks. Top one tortilla with pepper jack cheese, salsa and chicken evenly. For some added heat to the dish, season with more jerk. Place the second tortilla on the top and cook on a quesadilla maker until brown and crispy.
For oven cooking spray a pan and set the first tortilla down, then begin to arrange. Cook at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. You might also consider flipping it (carefully).
As a side, I recommend Guy Fieri’s homemade ranch as a dipping sauce, which I’ve also posted in an earlier dish.