Flour tortillas are another thing that´s taking up freezer space. I tend to do that, buy in bulk with some great idea in mind that then doesn´t come totally to life, like with this bread.
So, for today´s special stupid buy on my part I present you with 144 tortillas. Yes, a dozen dozens. Twelve times twelve. A `gruesa´ like it´s called in Spanish, which means thick and is used for bulk buying.
The Café has challenged me to come up, regularly, with new and original dishes. It´s a part of this business that I love; but I get carried away a lot and that´s definitely not good for the business part. I know what I´m about to say sounds very obvious, but it took me a while to realize that I had to cook and bake for the average customer, obviously.
Not for the ones who, like me, have a hard-to-understand love for roasted eggplants or soft goat cheese or ginger anything. Though I have a few of those that I strike up conversations with all the time about the benefits of a certain cake or how hard it is to find an ingredient, and even some who take the time, while sipping coffee and eating a piece of peanut butter chocolate cheesecake that I´ve made for the first time to see how it goes, and leave me a hand written two page note of the pros and cons of said cheesecake.
No, I´m talking about the ones that can pretty much eat most of the items on the menu as long as the levels of spiciness, sugariness and ingredient combinations are kept on a medium level. Average Customer.
So I bought the tortillas after I hunted down a good supplier, which was not easy. By that time I had so many recipes and ideas I wanted to try, it´s a miracle I didn´t buy 2 or even 3 `gruesas´. I give thanks to my limited freezer space. And guess what? After trying some quesadillas and wraps I wasn´t completely happy with the results so they didn´t make it to the menu.
But the tortillas made it to my refrigerator until I went online and bought another little book aptly called Quesadillas. And I used it today for the first time.
If you´re still reading (I would understand if you were bored on the second paragraph), you´re even interested in the recipe, and trust that I can cook something in spite of my poor choice when buying, this quesadilla came out fantastic. So good. So good, so good, so good...
The combination of cumin, lemon juice, cheese and extra crisp tortilla was incredible; juices dripping and the tortilla shattering into pieces made this a worthwhile wait. And now I have so many more flour rounds waiting in my freezer, I might just be forced to eat this all the time. Life is tough, I know.
FAJITA STYLE QUESADILLAS
slightly adapted from Quesadillas, by Donna Kelly
Note: you can use lime zest and juice instead of lemon, but don´t leave it out.
1 pound (450g) top sirloin steak
1 teaspoon lemon zest
3 Tbs lemon juice
3 Tbs canola or sunflower oil, divided
1 teaspoon to 1 Tbs cumin
1 teaspoon chile powder
2 Tbs chopped jalapeños
1 teaspoon salt
1 large red onion
4 large flour tortillas
Let meat stand at room tº for 15 minutes. Thinly slice across the grain and then place in a medium bowl or a Ziploc bag, together with the lemon zest and juice, 1 Tbs oil, cumin, chile powder, jalapeños and salt. Marinate at room tº for 30 minutes, turning occasionally.
In a large skillet heat the remaining oil and add the pieces of meat. Sauté them for 3 to 5 minutes, depending on the thickness. Don´t over cook them. Remove meat from skillet and reserve.
Cut onion in strips. Add to skillet and brown lightly. Return meat to skillet and mix well. Turn off heat.
Preheat your oven grill to 400ºF / 200ºC.
Lay 4 tortillas on the counter and spread ¼ of the meat mixture on each half. Sprinkle ¼ of the grated cheese and fold the empty half of the tortilla over.
Put the 4 prepared tortillas on an oven sheet and grill for about 1 or 2 minutes on each side. It should turn golden and crisp.
Cut into wedges and serve immediately.