Cheese and poblano quesadillas

Yield: 6 Servings

Measure Ingredient
1½ cup Grated manchego cheese
1 cup Grated panela cheese
½ cup Grated cotija cheese
6 \N Flour tortillas
½ cup Chipotle salsa (optional)
4 \N Poblano chiles, roasted, peeled, seeded & julienned
2 tablespoons Unsalted butter, melted

In a bowl, mix together the cheeses.

Lay the tortillas on a counter. Divide the cheese mix into 6 portions and spread over half of each tortilla. If desired, sprinkle about a tablespoon of salsa over each. Arrange the chile strips evenly over the cheese. Fold the tortillas over to enclose the filling and brush the tops with butter.

Preheat the oven to 350øF.

Place a dry griddle or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Place the tortillas buttered side down in the pan. Cook until very light golden,a bout 1 minute. Then brush the uncoated sides with butter and flip over.

Cook until golden, and transfer to a baking sheet. When all the quesa- dillas are cooked, transfer the baking sheet to the oven and bake 10 min- utes, until the cheese begins to ooze.

Serve hot, whole or cut into wedges.

NOTE: Manchego Cheese: There are two kinds of manchego used in mexican cooking - and neither is the high-priced Spanish variety sold in upscale cheese shops. There is a hard variety (called viejo) and a soft, semifirm, golden one that is an excellent melter. The soft one is used most often for cooking. Monterey Jack or muenster can be substituted.

Anejo Cheese: Also known as Cotija, is a salty, crumbly white cheese, similar to feta in appearance. Romano or washed and dried feta are good substitutes.

Panela Cheese: is a mild, milky-tasting, fresh white cheese often sold in rounds. A ricotta, farmer's or dry cottage cheese can be substituted.

The reason Mary Sue and Susan like to use one part manchego, one part panella and one-half part anejo is because they give a greater texture and flavor than just one cheese, but is not a hard-and-fast rule. They both say to go right ahead and use whatever you happen to have in the kitchen, or experiment and come up with you own cheese mix.

SOURCE: Mesa Mexican by Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger with Helena Siegel.

From Gemini's MASSIVE MealMaster collection at

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