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Cotija Crusted Quesadillas with Basil and Jalapeno, Topped with Sweet Balsamic Corn and Smoked Red Pepper Sauce

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Serves 4 Servings | Prep Time | Cook Time

Why I Love This Recipe

Recipe from Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill Cookbook

For the Southwestern Cooking Class - 110

Bobby Flay, pure and simple, at his finest! This is one of my Bobby's best ever quesadillas. Combine basil and jalapeno is unexpected and oh so great. There are a lot of ingredients and step in this simple little quesadilla, but with prep and planning you can make the sauces ahead and then put it together pretty quickly. And it's worth the effort! Thanks Bobby, love ya, call me, mean it!

Ingredients You'll Need

1 cup wine – for the cook
12 (6 inch) flour tortillas
6 oz. grated Monterey Jack cheese (about 1 - 1/2 cups)
8 oz. goat cheese, crumbled
2 large Jalapenos, finely diced
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup grated Cotija cheese (about 1 oz.)
2 teaspoons Ancho chile powder
Sweet Balsamic Corn Relish (recipe follows)
Smoked Red Pepper Sauce (recipe follows)

Sweet Balsamic Corn Relish
Makes about 2 - 1/4 cups
1 cup wine – for the cook
4 cups frozen corn (or 2 large ears fresh corn, grilled, kernels removed from cobs)
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 Tablespoon honey
2 Tablespoon olive or canola oil
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil
Salt and pepper to taste

Smoked Red Pepper Sauce
Makes about 2 - 1/2 cups
1 cup wine – for the cook
4 red bell peppers, roasted
1/2 small red onion coarsely chopped
4 cloves or roasted garlic
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 scant Tablespoon chipotle puree
1/2 Canola oil


Preheat the oven to 425. Put 8 of the tortillas on a flat sauce and divide in order: the Monterey Jack, the goat cheese, jalapenos and basil among the tortillas. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Stack the tortillas to make four 2-layer tortillas and top each with one of the remaining tortillas. Brush the tops with the oil and sprinkle with the Cotija cheese and dust with Ancho chile powder.

Transfer to a baking sheet(s) and bake for 8-10 minutes, until the tortillas are lightly brown and the cheese has melted.

To Serve: Cut into quarters and top with the corn relish and the smoked red pepper sauce.

For the Sweet Balsamic Corn Relish

Roast the corn (per the previous instructions) or grill the corn and remove from cob. Combine with the remaining ingredients. Let sit at room temp at least 15 or up to an hour before serving.

For the Smoked Red Pepper Sauce

Preheat the oven to 375. Brush the peppers with olive oil and place on a baking sheet in the oven. Roast, turning occasionally until charred on all sides, about 15-20 minutes.

Remove and place in a bowl and cover with lid and let sit for 15-20 minutes to allow skins to loosen. Peel, halve, seed and chop. (Peppers can be stored about 5 days, coved in the refrigerator.)

Combine the peppers and remaining ingredients, except oil, in a blender or processor and process until smooth. With motor running, add oil and blend until emulsified. Stain into a bowl. Salt and pepper to taste.

(This sauce can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator until ready for use. Keeps for several days after.)

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