This recipe is adapted from the test recipe I did for Clean Eating Magazine, July 2011. The original recipe calls for Tomato Peach Salsa, but I prefer it with mango. Also, don’t turn your nose up at the ricotta cheese, it really adds to the dish. These are quite filling, so all you need is to add a little guacamole on the side and you have dinner!
photo from Clean Eating Mag, July 2011
CHICKEN & BLACK BEAN QUESADILLAS
With Tomato Mango Salsa
8oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast
Olive oil in a mister
¼ tsp ground cumin
1 ripe mango, diced
2 plum tomatoes, seeded & diced
¼ cup finely diced red onion
3 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
½ jalapeno pepper, stemmed, seeded and minced (optional)
1 tbsp. fresh lime juice, divided (original recipe calls for lemon)
1 cup BPA-free canned black beans, drained and rinsed well
¾ cup shredded low-fat Monterey Jack or cheddar cheese (I use Monterey Jack)
¾ cup low-fat ricotta cheese
6 whole-grain tortillas (6 inch in diameter)
Set broiler to high and mist chicken with olive oil and sprinkle with cumin. Place on a foil-lined broiler pan and broil, in oven, turning once until fully cooked (about 10-12 minutes). Allow chicken to cool and shred using your fingers or two forks. (Tip: You can also boil chicken ahead of time which is what I usually do.)
Prepare Salsa: In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, mango, onion, cilantro, jalapeno, ½ tbsp. lime juice and ¼ tsp. salt.
In a separate medium bowl, coarsely mash beans with remaining lime juice and ¼ tsp. salt; stir in both cheeses and chicken.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Mist 1 side of each tortilla with olive oil or cooking spray. Flip tortillas over and spread chicken mixture on half of each. Fold each tortilla in half, covering chicken mixture; press gently to flatten. Place on a large parchment paper-lined baking sheet and bake, turning once, until golden and crisp, about 15 minutes. Cut each in half and serve with salsa.
Black Beans: They are high in fiber which help to lower bad (LDL) cholesterol and raise the good (HDL). Abundant in antioxidants and phytochemicals, studies have connected black bean consumption with reduced risk of certain cancers.
Onion: A good source of vitamin C, dietary fiber, vitamin B6, folate and potassium. Studies show eating onions can cut the risk of several cancers. They also contain Quercitin which has been shown to thin the blood, lower bad (LDL) cholesterol and raise good (HLD) cholesterol, ward off blood clots, fight asthma, chronic bronchitis, diabetes and infections.
Cilantro: This herb is a good source of minerals such as potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, and magnesium. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps control heart rate and blood pressure. It is also rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and dietary fiber, which help reduce bad cholesterol while raising good cholesterol.
Tomato: Filled with vitamins A,C, and K, a good source of potassium, fiber, folate and lypocene. They can reduce your risk for heart disease and certain cancers. Tomatoes’ lycopene also makes skin less sensitive to UV light damage.
I love Mexican and Southwestern food and I am always looking for new recipes – what’s your favorite recipe within this category?