Black bean quesadillas

Black bean quesadillas
Black bean quesadillas
Black bean quesadillas

Essentially, a quesadilla is a Mexican cheese toastie – and seriously, what’s not to like about that?! There’s also no toastie machine/fancy single- contact grill involved, you can simply squidge these babies into your frying pan and fill them with all sorts of magical fillings. In fact, it reminded me of the Branston pickle and cheese toasties my mum used to make me. I remember it like it was yesterday, that first glorious bite that would send a molten cheesy Branston pickle lava to run down my chin, burning my face and the inside of my mouth. Good times.
Anyhoo, until I come up with a safe alternative to the Branston pickle toastie, let’s squash some black beans together with some cheese and have a fiesta. Quesadillas are easy to make and a great way to get rid of leftovers, because you can fill them with pretty much anything, just as long as you have some kind of cheese to bind it all together. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again (a bit more sincerely this time) ‘good times’.

Black bean quesadillas
Makes 2 quesadillas / Hands on time 30 mins / Total time 35 mins /
1 tsp rapeseed oil
1 small white onion, peeled and thinly sliced
½ tsp ground cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
Pinch of chilli flakes
1 corn on the cob, kernels removed
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 lime
Handful of fresh coriander chopped
150g grated vegetarian cheddar (75g per quesadilla)
4 large wholemeal tortillas
To serve 
2 spring onions, chopped
Avocado, stoned and scooped out

1. Preheat an oven to 140°C/120°C fan/ 275°F/gas mark 1 and place 2 large oven-proof plates inside. Meanwhile, in a large frying pan or casserole dish, sweat the sliced onions in the rapeseed oil with a good pinch of salt until softened (add a dash of water if the onions are catching to help them steam).
2. Once the onions are soft, add the smoked paprika, cumin and chilli flakes and continue to cook for a few minutes, stirring continually (if the spices start to stick to the bottom
, add a dash of water to loosen them up). Meanwhile, carefully run a sharp knife down the sides of the corn on the cob to remove the kernels and add them to the pan along with the black beans and the juice of half a lime. Give it all a good stir and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cut the remaining lime into wedges.
3. Cook the bean mixture for a further five minutes on a medium to high heat before adding a handful of chopped coriander. Take off the heat, cover with a lid and put to one side.

TIP: Once cooled the filling can be frozen. I usually only make one quesadilla and freeze the other half of the bean mixture for another day. To freeze, fully cool before spooning into an airtight container and freezing for up to 3 months. 

4. Grate the cheese (75g per quesadilla) and put to one side. *Put a large non-stick frying pan on a medium to high heat and place a wholemeal tortilla inside. Top with half the bean mixture and spread it out evenly. Sprinkle with half the cheddar and top with another tortilla. Press down on the quesadilla with a spatular as it is cooking to make sure it is as flat as possible (this makes it easier to flip). Cook for 5 minutes before flipping and cooking on the other side for a further 5 minutes.

TIP: Don’t be scared to flip the quesadilla, just do it quickly. I never manage to flip mine perfectly but once it’s flipped you can tidy it up a bit in the pan).

5. Using oven gloves, carefully remove one of the plates from the oven and turn the first quesadilla out onto it. Cover with foil and place back in the oven on top of the other plate to keep warm. Repeat the process from the for the second quesadilla.
6. Once the second quesadilla is ready, carefully remove the first quesadilla for the oven along with the foil and the other hot plate (the plates will be very hot so please use oven gloves and handle with care). Turn the second quesadilla out onto the remaining hot plate, cut each quesadilla into eighths and serve with lime wedges and sprinkled with chopped spring onions. 

Black bean quesadillas
Black bean quesadillas

If you’ve had a go at making any of my recipes, I’d love to hear from you. Follow me now @corrieheale and tag your recipe pictures using #corriesrabbitfood.

V– Vegetarian     – The bean mixture can be frozen for up to 3 months once cooled.