Mediterranean Monday: Loaded Veggie Quesadilla

Hello Friends,

The holidays are coming and I’ve been overtaken with holiday spirit! Last weekend I put up the Christmas tree…yes, already! In between hanging ornaments from the skin-breaking branches (my poor hands are torn to bits), I baked up a batch of chocolate chip cookies from scratch and washed them down with a glass of egg nog. With the chilly air and snow already in the forecast for this week, I simply cannot resist the feeling of Christmas cheer weaving its way into my heart!

With the teensy sampling of winter we’re having comes the sick-bugs. Hunter came down with some sort of odd virus just in time for Veteran’s Day, which means my solo day home from work became a day for taking care of the sick. Sore throat and fever for him, and scrubbing and sanitizing everything in sight for me. It also reminded me to eat my veggies to load up on vitamin protection.

My original plan for today’s post was to share the broccoli soup I made this weekend with you, but the call for veggies took center stage. I have a regular hankering for rich sweets and decadent chocolate, but I thank my good Lord and maker every day that He also put some pizzazz in my taste buds for those savory vegetables!

I have a produce drawer in my fridge that is always brimming with beautiful colors, and today they were calling to me. I had a handful of cherry tomatoes and two Baby Bella mushrooms that were both starting to pass their peak, so I centered my lunch around them. For me, tomatoes and mushrooms almost always mean spinach too. And I can’t sauté spinach without some bell pepper, onion and garlic. I also had about an ounce of white cheddar cheese left in a baggie, so I found a way to bring it all together.

Loaded Veggie Quesadilla

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Ingredients:

  • 2 TBS chopped white or yellow onion
  • 1 chopped mini bell pepper
  • 1/2 TBS minced garlic (I cheat and use the stuff in the jar!)
  • 2 Baby Bella mushrooms
  • 5-6 cherry tomatoes
  • Generous handful of fresh spinach leaves
  • 1-2 TBS olive oil
  • 1 whole wheat tortilla

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add bell pepper and onion, and cook until onion begins to turn transparent.
  2. Add garlic to onion and peppers. While this is cooking, slice the mushrooms and add to skillet.
  3. While the mushrooms are beginning to cook down, go ahead and slice the tomatoes in half and add to the skillet. Stir the mixture together and let cook for a few minutes, until the tomatoes soften and start to break down.
  4. Turn off heat, then toss in the spinach. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste, and stir constantly until the spinach leaves begin to wilt. Remove from heat immediately and set aside on a plate – the spinach will continue to wilt as it sits.
  5. Grate the white cheddar cheese and set it aside next to the vegetable mixture.
  6. Spray the skillet with a bit of olive oil spray and place the tortilla in the bottom. Spread the vegetable mixture on half of the tortilla, the sprinkle cheese over the top evenly. Fold the tortilla in half, cover the skillet with a lid, and let tortilla brown over low-medium heat for about 3 minutes.
  7. Gently turn the tortilla over using a sturdy pancake turner, and allow the other side to brown for an additional 3 minutes, covered with a lid to help the cheese melt.
  8. Slide quesadilla from skillet onto a plate and allow to rest for a couple of minutes. Then, using a pizza cutter, slice the quesadilla into three equal-size squares.

 Enjoy!

Love,
Loren

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