Thursday, February 25, 2010

Fun with Pumpkin

A few nights ago I was wandering the grocery store, realizing that I hadn't really planned what to cook for dinner. I happened to be in the canned food aisle, and I spotted pumpkin. I love pumpkin. And I particularly love pumpkin in savory dishes, although I don't cook with it very often. I decided to experiment with a new quesadilla, and it's definitely worth sharing. Even my toddler liked it!

The version I made here is a hearty quesadilla, perfect for a meal. I froze a bunch of them and have been packing them for lunch. You could easily make this a thinner, appetizer-style quesadilla by spreading out the filling over more tortillas. I would keep the cheese to at least 1/4 cup per tortilla.

Bean & Pumpkin Quesadillas
Serves 4-6
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 a large onion, diced
  • 3/4 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Dash of cayenne pepper
  • 1 can pumpkin puree
  • 1 can black refried beans (I like the consistency of Amy's beans)
  • 2 cups shredded cheese (preferably a Mexican blend)
  • 8 medium tortillas
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan and saute the onion until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper, and cayenne, then saute another 2-3 minutes. Add the pumpkin to the pan and stir. Warm slightly.

Spread some beans (no more than 1/4 cup) over half of each tortilla, then spread a similar amount of the pumpkin mixture over the other half of the tortilla. Top the beans with 1/4 cup of shredded cheese. Fold in half, then transfer the quesadillas to a skillet or griddle pan. Cook in batches over medium heat until golden brown, about 4 minutes per side.

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