Saturday, January 15, 2011

BBQ Chicken Quesadilla with Green Apple Salsa

The other night I cooked some chicken in the slow cooker.  Slow cooked chicken shreds beautifully and one batch made enough for me to use in at least two recipes.  One was a quick and easy stew, the other was these quesadillas.  I contemplated many ideas for the chicken stir fried with noodles, chicken salad but ultimately landed on quesadilla because I love them and knew I'd be able to make use of some things I already had in the pantry. Specifically a bottle of BBQ sauce I got in the gift bag at the 2009 FoodBuzz blogger festival and a massive bag of green apple I bought at the store the other day.  I know, I know who holds onto a freebie like that for so long?  Honestly I forgot I had it and when I was going through the pantry looking for something I found this cute little bottle of Napa Valley BBQ with Maple and Horseradish.  I knew it would go great with some smokey cheddar and the maple flavor work work well with an apple salsa.

BBQ Chicken Quesadilla
4 servings

2 cups shredded chicken
6 oz BBQ Sauce - I used Napa Valley BBQ with Maple & Horseradish
2 1/2 cups shredded smoked cheddar
8 taco sized whole wheat tortillas
black pepper
extra virgin olive oil

1. Pre heat oven to 350F.  Lightly oil 2 baking sheets.  Toss shredded chicken with BBQ Sauce, taste and add salt & pepper as necessary.  Set aside.
2.  Heat a saute pan over medium heat.  Lightly oil with olive oil.  Place 1 tortilla in the heated pan and warm until lightly browned, flip and repeat on opposite side.  Place warmed tortillas in a clean kitchen towel until ready to assemble.
3. To assemble, place two tortillas side by side on baking sheet.  Layer each tortilla with 1/4 cup or more shredded cheese, 1/2 cup chicken mixture, 1/4 cup cheese and a warmed tortilla.  A baking sheet will hold 2 assembled quesadillas comfortably.
4.  Place in heated oven and bake for 5-10 minutes until cheese is melted. While the first sheet bakes, assemble the other 2 quesadillas.  Remove the cooked quesadillas from oven and let cool for 5 minutes.  Cut into quarters with a pizza cutter and serve with green apple salsa.

Green Apple Salsa

1 granny smith apple - peeled and diced
1/2 jalapeno - seeded, deveined and diced
1/4 cup diced red onion
1 clove garlic - diced
1 Tbsps chopped fresh cilantro
1 lime - juiced

Toss all of the ingredients in a bowl and let sit to allow the flavors to marry.  Serve with BBQ chicken quesadilla

The Boy LOVED these!  He loved them so much he said they deserved a post, which was great since I didn't make them to post, but then realized they were so quick and easy and great use for leftovers that I had to share.  He loved the way the apple salsa tasted with the BBQ and cheddar and when he ran out of salsa wanted more to finish all of his bites.  I loved that this was a super easy and flavorful meal. One quesadilla with salsa and a quick and easy green salsa with some olive oil and balsamic vinegar made for an easy and filling weeknight meal.  It's also a great way to use up leftover chicken. If we had some caramelized onions or I wanted to take some extra time that would have been a really nice addition, but these were great as is and something I'd love to make again but because of my no reEATS pledge I won't be able to until next year!  At least not for dinner.


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