Sunday, October 2, 2011

Comal Quesadilla With Potato Filling

For anyone who like Quesadilla's from their local Mexican restaurant, it may come as a surprise that a mashed potato filling with cheese is actually a really, really traditional filling for them in the heart of Mexico

This is a traditional comal

This comes from one of my all time favorite Mexican cookbooks A Taste Of Mexico, which is also, like Carson's New Native American Cooking, unfortunately out of print.  It was written by one Mexico's finest chefs, bar none:  Patricia Quintana.  If anyone like to watch Andrew Zimmern's Travel Channel show Bizarre Foods, look for her in his Mexico episode.  The book is a treasure of really traditional dishes by general compass regions of the country.  There is one whole chapter devoted to Mexico City (or some still call it Tenochtitlan) alone.  This recipe comes from that section.  


8 Medium red skinned potatoes
Water to boil (around 2 to 2 1/2 quarts)
Salt To Taste
2 cups Mozzarella cheese, shredded

1.  Bring water to boil and add salt (my note:  I like to use at least tbsp.).  Add the potatoes and boil until tender.  Drain.

2.  While hot, mash the potatoes and add in the cheese, stir well.


Note:  these a seriously from scratch!

2 1/2 lbs. dried white or blue corn kernels, washed well
10 Quarts water
2 cups ground limestone
Salt to taste (my note:  a pinch is all that is needed)


1 Recipe of your favorite red sauce (in the book this can be found on page 74)
1 Recipe of your favorite green sauce (or page 104 in the book)

1.  Put the corn in a large stock pot.  Add the water and then stir in the limestone and the salt and stir well.  Cook over low heat until the skin of the kernels puckers, and can easily be removed (my note:  this is a kind of hominy).  Remove from heat and cool.  Remove the skins from the kernels and wash them (my note:  rubbing them between your hands and then putting them successive changes of water works really well--the skins will float).  

2.  Grind the treated corn in a mill.  Then knead, with enough water to form a pliant, elastic masa (dough).

3.  Heat the comal or griddle.  Make the masa into tortillas (my note:  a press is great for this--these should be "thickish").  Cook the tortillas on the comal or griddle like you would for fresh tacos.  Make sure the filling is heated.  Place some of the heated filling in the middle of each tortillas while it is still on the heat, fold in half to make the quesadillas.  Continue to cook on the griddle until warmed completely through.  Remove and serve whole or cut with red AND green salsa.

These are super attractive made with blue corn!


You can make the tortillas from prepared masa from a tortilla shop.

You can make the tortillas from masa harina.

You may make these with regular wheat flour tortillas.

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