These were yummy, filling and healthy.  Not a great picture, - dang!
They would also be tasty as vegetarian, just omit the chicken.  This meal was a great way to use up extra things in the fridge.  Who knew purred pumpkin could be so tasty?  And funny thing - no one in the family believed me when I said there was purred pumpkin in the quesadilla's!  Pureed butternut squash would be lovely in this dish too.
Olive Oil
8 Brown Rice Tortillas
1 yam, sliced into quarters, about 1/4 inch thick
1 8 oz. skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 1/2 inch pieces or chicken tenders
a quarter of a green pepper, thinly sliced, roughly chopped
2/3 cup pumpkin puree
2-3 Tblsp. tomato paste
1/2 of a red onion, sliced
5 minced garlic cloves
1/2 cup of minced Cilantro
1 Tblsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
salt and pepper
1 cup of black beans, rinsed
1 1/2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
Heat up a frying pan on medium heat with a drizzle of olive oil.  Add in the chicken, and season with salt and pepper.  Because the chicken was so small, it only took a few minutes to cook and lightly brown.  Then remove to a bowl and set aside.  Add in another drizzle of olive oil to the pan, adding in the onion, green pepper, garlic and yams.  Saute about 5 minutes, then add in a splash of water, cover with the lid slightly cracked, and simmer another 5 minutes, or until the water is evaporated, and the yams are tender.  Return the chicken to the pan.
Combine the tomato paste, chili powder, cumin and pumpkin puree in a bowl, mixing together, and pour over the yam, and chicken.  Add in the black beans, cilantro, and season with salt and pepper, turn down the heat to low.  The mixture will be on the thick side. Saute a minute or two, just to heat the beans through.
Remove from the heat. Heat up another frying pan on medium heat with a drizzle of olive oil.  Cut the brown rice tortillas in half.  Scoop some of the filling onto one half, add a good amount of grated cheese.
Then cover with the other half of the tortilla, and place into heated frying pan.  I gently press down on the quesadilla's, and cook about 3 minutes per side, until golden and the cheese is melted.  Serve while hot with Salsa on the side.

Ina Gawne


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March 18, 2011