Dished up: Chilli Beef Quesadillas

Quesadillas are a favourite in our house. For us they are a welcome alternative to pasta, rice and potatoes and are nice and easy for our children to eat as they are essentially a fancy sandwich.

I first discovered them on BBC Good Food site. They are traditionally a Mexican food so the fillings reflect that but the ones I first made were filled with sweet potato, feta and chorizo and were absolutely delicious. Often I'll use a cooked chicken, as I did in the chicken and spinach lasagne and throw it in with some onions, peppers, spicy BBQ sauce and some cheese. You really can fill them with anything. Most recently I followed a recipe for a chilli beef filling and it was one of those times that while I was eating I found myself thinking, I could do a much better recipe than this.So here is my attempt.

What you need:
8 tortilla wraps
500g beef mince
Olive oil
1 onion finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1tsp paprika
1tsp cumin
1tsp chilli powder (hot if you can handle it)
200ml beef stock
250g passata
100g cooked sweetcorn
200g cheddar (coarsely grated)

Just a little note on the wraps for those of you in the UK. Tesco do some excellent value wraps. They are just as good as the normal ones but a little smaller. For this recipe they are perfect. If you buy the slightly more expensive ones you may find you only have enough beef to fill 6. If you're feeding 4 adults it will save arguments if you have 8 so make a little more!

Prep time: Give yourself an hour to make the sauce and assemble the quesadillas. This isn't all hands on time. Mince is a cheap cut so cooking it for longer always does it good. Even better, make the sauce in the morning or the night before to allow the flavour of the spices to develop.
Cooking time: 10-20 minutes depending on how big your griddle pan is.

What to do:
1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a low heat. Soften the onion so it is cooked but not coloured. About 10 minutes. Add the garlic and spices and cook for a further minute.
2. Turn up the heat and add the beef. Break it up with a spoon and turn it over until all the meat is browned.
3. Add the stock and the passata and bring the sauce to a simmer. Leave over a low heat for 40 minutes or until your sauce is quite dry.
4. Season really well and stir through the sweetcorn. Remove from the heat.
5. Lay your wraps on your work surface and divide the sauce between them, spreading it out to cover half of each wrap. Meanwhile heat up your griddle pan. (A frying pan works fine but you won't have any fun stripes on your quesadillas.)
6. Sprinkle the cheese over the meat on each wrap and fold the wrap in half giving it a good press to stick it down.
7. When your pan is really hot, dry fry the quesadillas for a minute or two on each side, fit two in the pan at time if you can. Cut them in half to leave you with quarter circles and serve with a salad, potato wedges or both!

If you do have any left over though they are great for lunch the next day. Cassie xx

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