Fortunately when that occurs today, the nearest Mexican-food eatery often is as close as one’s neighborhood street corner. But such was not always the case, especially outside the “Tex-Mex Belt” (the Lone Star State and environs). In the late 1960s when Hubby and I lived in Louisville, KY, for him to attend graduate school, our desperate hunt for enchiladas and tacos and guacamole yielded sad results. The city was without Hispanic cuisine. That’s how I learned to make my favorite guacamole and Mexican-fried rice and homemade enchiladas—totally in self-defense. We knew we couldn’t live without our regular Tex-Mex fix, so we invented our own until such time as Mexican-food eateries spread eastward.
Today those almost-manic cravings for dining on Tex-Mex still seize me. I still cook my standby favorites as well as add new ones to the collection. The one featured in today’s blog arrived a few months back in my mail in the form of a Kroger grocery-store flyer, often the source of some terrific recipes. Cheese, Mushroom, and Corn Quesadillas are easy and diverse. Originally featured to inspire pre-Super Bowl 2011 food preparation, this recipe is versatile for any occasion and, as in our case, was served as a meal and not just as an appetizer.
The combination of fresh mushrooms and fresh corn topped with cheese made an extraordinary flavor and a very healthy dish.
Today local Tex-Mex offerings exist from sea to shining sea and even in foreign countries (Hubby and I got the shock of our lives when we encountered some of the world’s best Tex-Mex in Abidjan, Ivory Coast in West Africa. Really. The Lebanese owner of the restaurant had married a Texas gal, who had to have her Mexican cuisine even on the Dark Continent. This place probably served the best salsa I’ve ever experienced.) They can also exist from one’s own stovetop, thanks to the likes of Cheese, Mushroom, and Corn Quesadillas.
Cheese, Corn, and Mushroom Quesadillas
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 cup fresh corn kernels, cooked
2 cloves garlic
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon each salt (or salt substitute) and pepper
8 (7-inch) flour tortillas
1 1/2 cups Mexican-blend cheese
In skillet over medium heat melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add onion; cook for 3 minutes. Add mushrooms, corn, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper. Cook 5 minutes or until liquid evaporates. Melt remaining butter; brush one side of each of 4 tortillas. Arrange tortillas, buttered-side down, on baking sheet; top with 1 cup cheese, mushroom mixture, and remaining tortillas. Brush tops with butter. Bake at 450 degrees for 6 minutes. Top with remaining cheese; bake 1 minute or until cheese is melted. Top with salsa. Served as an appetizer, serves 8 to 10.