Suzanne Hollander, MS, RD

As a dietitian, home cook, and enthusiast of all-things-delicious, I'm often asked, "so what do YOU eat?" Here's a blog to answer that very question! My hope is that you'll find (even just a little) inspiration from some of my favorite recipes, restaurants, party-ideas and food musings for your own happy, healthy, food-loving lifestyle.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Kabocha Blue Cheese Quesadillas

These vegetarian quesadillas make a seasonal, tasty appetizer or hearty meal. They have the flavors of autumn, without using the same old ingredients and spices. You could also replace the kabocha with pumpkin, which you may have lying around after Thanksgiving!

The Nutrition Rundown: Kabocha, like other orange vegetables, packs tons of vitamin A, which means that one of these quesadillas gives you over a third of your daily needs of that powerful antioxidant. Using whole grain tortillas in place of regular, refined flour tortillas packs in more fiber- pairing this quesadilla with a side salad is sure to fill you up! 

 Kabocha and Blue Cheese Quesadillas
Makes 4 large quesadillas 
Serves 4 meal portions or ~8 appetizer portions

½ medium Kabocha squash, halved and seeds scooped out (or about 1.5 cup mashed kabocha or pumpkin)
2 oz blue cheese (or goat cheese)- I used Humboldt Fog
1 clove garlic, minced
1 large leek, cleaned and sliced
1 red onion, sliced
Salt and pepper
4 large whole grain tortillas 
~3 Tbs oil, divided
  1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In shallow glass baking dish, pour ½ cup water. Place squash flesh side down in pan and bake for about 40 minutes, or until orange flesh is fork tender. Remove from oven and allow to cool. 
  2. Scoop squash from skin and place in medium mixing bowl. Add cheese and mash to combine. Season with salt and pepper. 
  3. Over medium heat, saute garlic, onions and leeks in ~1/2 Tbs oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Spread kabocha mixture evenly across tortillas. Top with leek mixture. Fold tortillas in half. 
  5. Heat 1/2 Tbs oil in large skillet over medium heat. Pan fry 1 quesadilla in skillet for about 2-3 minutes, flip quesadilla and fry until both sides are golden crisp. Repeat with remaining quesadillas.  

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