This past week has been really interesting. A few things happened.
On 4th of July, while we were heading to my in-laws’ house, our car ran over a huge piece of sharp metal on the freeway. Loud pop! Immediately, we knew we had a flat tire. Ahhhh…. Why on July 4th? Don’t be kidding me! Thank goodness that our tires are run-flat. We were able to continue our day and made home safely. Oh man, that hole on the tire was so big that you can fit a golf ball through it! Ka-ching! There goes $220! Sad… But thankful, we weren’t hurt and the car didn’t have any other damage.
A couple of days ago, a real-life cop show happened right next door. Undercover police stormed my neighbor’s garage in the afternoon with guns. I was home, so I witnessed some of the actions. I was told by the police to stay inside. I was definitely a bit scared and confused. Luckily, there wasn’t any shot fire or anything like that. Apparently, the police believed that there were drugs hiding in the garage. The police searched the garage and the apartment for hours. Cars were towed away. By the time, Bryan and I went to bed, the police was still here. They were here for at least 9 hours. Even though this suspicious garage was my neighbor’s, he never uses it. It is rented out (or lent) to his friends. It is very unfortunate. We know our neighbor is a nice guy. We truly believe he is innocent. I hope he is ok and doesn’t get drag into this mess any deeper. For now, things are peaceful and quiet. Hope it is going to stay this way.
Now, with all the craziness out the way, let’s talk about quesadillas!
If you don’t know what a quesadilla is, it is like a grilled cheese sandwich. A folded flour tortilla fills with cheese and sometimes, chicken. Then cook on the griddle to crisp up the tortilla and melt the cheese. To make this even special and better, BBQ sauce is added to this recipe. Sweet and tangy BBQ sauce works well with the Monterey Jack cheese and roasted chicken. Not to forget the cilantro and chile, that freshness and spiciness help to balance the flavors. When Bryan and I took a first bite, we immediately thought of the BBQ chicken pizza from CPK (California Pizza Kitchen). It tasted just like that! How awesome! We love these quesadillas. Hope you will too!
BBQ Chicken Quesadillas (Adapted from Curtis Stone)
– 2 bone-in chicken thighs (about ¾ pound)
– 3 10-inch-diameter flour tortillas
– 1½ – 2 cups grated Monterey Jack cheese
– 1 – 2 small jalapeno or Serrano chiles (remove stem and seeds and minced)
– 3 tablespoons onion (finely diced)
– ½ cup cilantro (roughly chopped)
– 1/3 cup BBQ sauce
– ground black pepper
– salsa (for serving)
– guacamole (for serving)
– sour cream (for serving, optional)
- Preheat the oven to 400˚F.
- Clean and pat dry the chicken. Season with salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and cook in the oven for 30 – 40 minutes until cook through. Remove from oven and let them rest for at least 20 minutes or until cool enough to handle. Remove and discard the skins. Shred the chicken with two forks into thin strips or bite-size pieces. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.
- Reduce the oven heat to 200˚F. Place a clean baking sheet in the oven.
- On a work surface, lay out the tortillas. Working on the bottom halves of the tortillas, sprinkle half of the cheese. Add chicken, chilies, onion, and cilantro. Drizzle about 1½ tablespoon BBQ sauce over each tortilla. Sprinkle rest of the cheese. Fold the uncovered tortilla over the fillings to form a half-moon shape.
- Heat a large flat griddle pan or 2 large pans over medium-high heat. Place 2 quesadillas on the griddle or 1 quesadilla on each large pan. Cook until crisp & golden brown on both sides, about 5 – 7 minutes total. Transfer the quesadillas to the baking sheet in the oven and keep warm. Repeat with the remaining quesadilla.
- Transfer the cooked quesadillas to a clean chopping board. Cut each quesadilla into 4 wedges. Place the wedges on serving plates. Serve with guacamole, sour cream, and salsa.
- The chicken can be cooked 1 day ahead. Cool, shred, put in a Ziploc bag and keep in the fridge.
- You can also use store-bought roast chicken instead of making yourself.
- I used 1 small Serrano chile, which made mild quesadilla. Use more if you like spicy food.
- Remember to use latex gloves to cut chile. Burning fingers are no fun.
- Bull’s-eye is our favorite store-bought BBQ sauce. This is what I used in this recipe.
- If you don’t feel like getting or making too many dips, just get one. Salsa is refreshing and light, which works perfect with these quesadillas.