Friday, August 5, 2011

My Favorite Quesadilla


Melted cheese. I think I could live on melted cheese for the rest of my life. That and ice cream, brownies, milk, and a treadmill.

Minus the treadmill.

These are my favorit-o quesadillas to make, and good for this summer…. dare I say it? HEEAAAT.

Agh. I think I’m sweating again. At least there’s no mosquitos.

This is another one of my favorite “start with a grocery store rotissiere chicken” recipes.
If you’re vegetarian, or pregnant and have an adverse reaction to the smell of meat, these would be great with black beans too.

I have a pregnant friend. (Hi Arlene!) Actually, quite a few!

Mmmm. I’m craving them now. Easier than nachos.

Fresh chopped tomatoes, cilantro, and fresh squeeeeezed lime juice.

In my honor, remember to put a band-aid over any open paper cuts before squeezing limes.
Thank you.

Cheese, glorious cheese!

My favorites are Colby Jack and Jalapeno Jack.

What’s up with that blue haze? I don’t have blue Jalapeno Jack.

HELLOOOO white balance.

My grandma never had a quesadilla and actually (no joke) ordered a “qwesa-dilllla” with “jalopy-noes” at Taco Bell with me once. The drive-thru attendant was not as amused as I was.

Melt some butter in a pan.

Butter, glorious butter.

This is that awesome panini press I was telling you about. QUITE handy.
Oops. Did I just admit that I like a gadget?

But, come ON! It’s, it’s NON-STICK!
And, and, it has, like a REALLY heavy lid that perfectly smooshes quesadillas and grilled cheese sandwiches!


Ok, so a girl like me tries to assemble the thing on the pan, and ultimately, spills it all over the pan and NOT the tortilla, SO – I assemble it off the heat now.

Cheese. Check.
Chicken. Check.
Tomatoes. Check.
Cilantro. Check.
SQUEEEZE the lime!

Squeal when the citric acid burns your paper cut.

Oh? Just me.


Move it to the pan, and add your top tortilla.
Grill over medium heat, flip when the bottom is golden and cook for a few more minutes.


Keep the heat on medium to avoid scorching your tortilla like I’ve done sooooo many times.


Cut into four pieces and thoroughly enjoy all that dripping cheese down your chin.



~Peace, Love, and Melted Cheese ya’ll!

What do ya’ll love to put in your quesadillas?

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My Favorite Quesadilla

Yield: serves 2

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes


1 1/2 cups shredded chicken
1/2 cup diced tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup shredded Colby Jack cheese
1/2 cup shredded Jalapeno Jack cheese
1 lime
4 tortillas


Melt a tablespoon of butter over medium heat. On the cutting board assemble the bottom half of your quesadilla with a handful of each type of cheese. Top with chicken, tomatoes, cilantro, and any other fillings you'd like. Top with juice from 1/2 the lime. Place a second tortilla on top and transfer to the hot pan. Cook 3-4 minutes until golden. Flip, and cook an additional 3-4 minutes on the other side. Cut into 4 pieces and serve!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Perfect Coleslaw


I finally found the perfect coleslaw. I could barely read the ingredients on the torn and faded pages of the old book I found it in, but it’s perfect. And I’m happy.

A little sweet, a little tangy, and just a teeny bit creamy.

Plain and simple.

First, we’re going to get us a bag of coleslaw mix.

Then we’re going to throw out that gross little pouch of “sweet and creamy” dressing.

I buy this bag because the only coleslaw bag without dressing is a 48 oz. party size.

I don’t need no “party size” of nuttin’!

I don’t know about you, but there is nothing that grosses me out more than gross coleslaw.
I always hated coleslaw ’till I found this recipe.
It was always soggy, sickly sweet, bleck.

But this coleslaw – this coleslaw tastes like…. veggies. So… fresh!

Easy, peasy.

Mix 4 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar.

Add in a teaspoon of sugar, one tablespoon of mayonnaise, and a tablespoon of dijon mustard.

Stir that around with a fork.

Then add in  a pinch of poppy seeds, and celery salt.

Be careful with celery salt, it’s powerful.

Look at that.

Gorgeous, darling.

Give it a toss, and serve it up!

And you’re done!
Could it have been any easier? I don’t think so!

This is definitely one of my go to quick fix sides, and it’s light and refreshing.


~Peace, Love, and Slaw ya’ll

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Perfect Coleslaw

Yield: serves 4

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes chill time

Total Time: 45 minutes


8.5 oz coleslaw mix
4 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
pinch of poppyseeds
pinch of celery salt


In a bowl, mix the vinegar, sugar, mayo, mustard, poppy seeds, and celery salt. Whisk with a fork, and pour over coleslaw.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Roasted Sweet Potatoes


I heart sweet potatoes as much as my 6 month old nephew. I’d grind ’em up and eat them in everything too, if I could, just like he does.

I could seriously snack on this little treat all day long, and one wouldn’t feel guilty like one does when one is poppin’ M&Ms.

I’ll tell you, I could eat Grandma’s baked sweet potatoes every day till Christmas with that sweet orange glaze and little puffed golden marshmallows, but my hips and glycemic index would probably beg to differ.

I don’t even know what a glycemic index is. Or if I have one.

I was glad to adapt this recipe from Ol’ Granny. And if I know what’s good for me and that size 6/8, I’d probably better stick to it.


Start with some sweet potatoes. Prob half a ‘tater for each person, depending on what else you’re cooking.

I make one whole ‘tater for myself, because I really snack on it all day long.

Did you know sweet ‘taters are, like, the new “super food?”

I guess it doesn’t count when covered in sweet orange glaze and golden puffed marshmallows.

But don’t worry, I’ll be sharin’ that recipe come November too.

Just dice those puppies up.

Toss a tablespoon of olive oil over them and mix them around.

I also covered the pan in foil (recycle!) for easy clean-up.


Sprinkle with coarse grain Kosher salt.

Oooh. Sweet and salty.

Bake at 400 degrees roughly 40 minutes, or until tender.


How’s THAT for easy weeknight side?

Peace, Love, and Roasting ya’ll!

~ I’ve been having a lot of fun with my iPhone hipstamatic app. Go ahead and share your favorite Instagram or Hipstamatic apps on The Hill Country Cook’s Facebook page too! I’d love to see them. I’m addicted.

While we’re feeling warm and fuzzy and friendly, ya’ll are also more than welcome to post pics of recipes from the site you’ve made, recipes you think I should feature, or cooking tips. Join the party! 😉

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Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Yield: serves 2

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes


2 sweet potatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
pinch of Kosher salt


Wash sweet potatoes and dice. Cover a baking sheet with foil. Spread 'taters in a single layer on the pan. Toss with olive oil. Sprinkle with Kosher salt. Bake at 400 degrees F, 40 minutes, or until tender.

While baking, don't turn them too much. This allows the sugars to carmelize and makes for a nice (but soft) crunch.