Spicy Chicken Quesadillas with Beet & Orange Salad

Spicy Chicken Quesadillas

with Beet & Orange Salad

45 MIN
2 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

A seasonal salad of striped Chioggia beet, juicy orange, and peanuts is a fresh pairing for these zesty quesadillas. We’re seasoning the chicken filling with both jalapeño pepper and Mexican spices—balanced by a layer of melty white cheddar. Mexican crema brightened up with lime juice is perfect for dipping.

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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    810 Cals (est.)
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Spicy Chicken Quesadillas with Beet & Orange Salad
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tips & techniques
Prepare & cook the beet:
1 Prepare & cook the beet:

Heat a small pot of salted water to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel the beet and cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch wedges. Once the pot of water is boiling, add the beet wedges and cook, uncovered, 22 to 24 minutes, or until tender when pierced with a fork. Drain and rinse under cold water for 30 seconds to 1 minute to stop the cooking process. Pat dry with paper towels and transfer to a large bowl.

Prepare the remaining ingredients:
2 Prepare the remaining ingredients:

While the beet cooks, cut off and discard the root ends of the scallions; thinly slice, separating the white bottoms and green tops. Using a peeler, remove the green rind of the lime, avoiding the white pith; mince to get 2 teaspoons of zest (or use a zester). Quarter the lime. Grate the cheese on the large side of a box grater. Peel the orange; halve lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. To make the lime crema, in a bowl, combine the crema and the juice of 2 lime wedges; season with salt and pepper to taste. Cut out and discard the stem, ribs, and seeds of the pepper; finely chop. Thoroughly wash your hands, knife, and cutting board immediately after handling the pepper.

Cook & chop the chicken:
3 Cook & chop the chicken:

While the beet continues to cook, pat the chicken dry with paper towels; season on both sides with salt, pepper, and the spice blend. In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned chicken; cook 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until browned and cooked through. Transfer to a cutting board; when cool enough to handle, roughly chop. Transfer to a medium bowl. Rinse and wipe out the pan.

Make the filling & assemble the quesadillas:
4 Make the filling & assemble the quesadillas:

To the bowl of chopped chicken, add the sliced white bottoms of the scallions, lime zest, the juice of 1 lime wedge, a drizzle of olive oil, and as much of the chopped pepper as you’d like, depending on how spicy you’d like the dish to be. Stir to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste. Place the tortillas on a work surface. Sprinkle the grated cheese onto 1 side of each tortilla. Evenly top with the filling. Fold each tortilla in half over the filling.

Cook the quesadillas:
5 Cook the quesadillas:

In the same pan, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium until hot. Add the quesadillas; cook 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until the tortillas are browned and the cheese has melted. (If the pan seems dry, add a drizzle of olive oil before flipping.) Transfer to a cutting board; immediately season with salt and pepper.

Make the salad & serve your dish:
6 Make the salad & serve your dish:

While the quesadillas cook, add the sliced orange, peanuts, the juice of the remaining lime wedge, and a drizzle of olive oil to the bowl of cooked beet. Stir to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste. Cut the cooked quesadillas in half. Garnish the quesadillas and salad with the sliced green tops of the scallions. Serve with the lime crema on the side. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

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Prepare & cook the beet:
1 Prepare & cook the beet:

Heat a small pot of salted water to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel the beet and cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch wedges. Once the pot of water is boiling, add the beet wedges and cook, uncovered, 22 to 24 minutes, or until tender when pierced with a fork. Drain and rinse under cold water for 30 seconds to 1 minute to stop the cooking process. Pat dry with paper towels and transfer to a large bowl.

2 Prepare the remaining ingredients:

While the beet cooks, cut off and discard the root ends of the scallions; thinly slice, separating the white bottoms and green tops. Using a peeler, remove the green rind of the lime, avoiding the white pith; mince to get 2 teaspoons of zest (or use a zester). Quarter the lime. Grate the cheese on the large side of a box grater. Peel the orange; halve lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. To make the lime crema, in a bowl, combine the crema and the juice of 2 lime wedges; season with salt and pepper to taste. Cut out and discard the stem, ribs, and seeds of the pepper; finely chop. Thoroughly wash your hands, knife, and cutting board immediately after handling the pepper.

Cook & chop the chicken:
3 Cook & chop the chicken:

While the beet continues to cook, pat the chicken dry with paper towels; season on both sides with salt, pepper, and the spice blend. In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned chicken; cook 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until browned and cooked through. Transfer to a cutting board; when cool enough to handle, roughly chop. Transfer to a medium bowl. Rinse and wipe out the pan.

4 Make the filling & assemble the quesadillas:

To the bowl of chopped chicken, add the sliced white bottoms of the scallions, lime zest, the juice of 1 lime wedge, a drizzle of olive oil, and as much of the chopped pepper as you’d like, depending on how spicy you’d like the dish to be. Stir to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste. Place the tortillas on a work surface. Sprinkle the grated cheese onto 1 side of each tortilla. Evenly top with the filling. Fold each tortilla in half over the filling.

Make the filling & assemble the quesadillas:
Cook the quesadillas:
5 Cook the quesadillas:

In the same pan, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium until hot. Add the quesadillas; cook 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until the tortillas are browned and the cheese has melted. (If the pan seems dry, add a drizzle of olive oil before flipping.) Transfer to a cutting board; immediately season with salt and pepper.

6 Make the salad & serve your dish:

While the quesadillas cook, add the sliced orange, peanuts, the juice of the remaining lime wedge, and a drizzle of olive oil to the bowl of cooked beet. Stir to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste. Cut the cooked quesadillas in half. Garnish the quesadillas and salad with the sliced green tops of the scallions. Serve with the lime crema on the side. Enjoy!

Make the salad & serve your dish:
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