Friday, May 21, 2010

Swiss Chard Quesadilla with Queso Fresco and Green Onions

We keep reading about the gourmet taco trucks popping up in L.A., New York and Austin.  While it's impossible to drive more than a few blocks here in Houston without passing a taco vendor, they all serve the same standard fare aimed at an audience craving familiar, affordable meals on the go.  There is rarely anything vegetarian on the menu other than a cheese quesadilla, and few if any fresh vegetables.
To fill the void, we introduced a small taco and quesadilla menu at Be-Wiched a few months ago.  While they're not exactly the paninis we usually serve, we figure these are really just sandwiches served on corn tortillas instead of ciabatta.   These new items have become wildly popular, especially the vegetarian tacos and quesadillas, probably because they are so unique for Houston.

At home, we've been experimenting with creating quesadillas from the garden.  We've made a quesadilla with Chinese kale, and another with butternut squash, feta and jalapeno.
Our most recent creation features home-grown Swiss chard and green onions combined with a classic Mexican cheese, queso fresco.  The filling has beautiful layers of red, green and white (just coincidentally the colors of the Mexican flag).  It is also wonderfully creamy and gooey thanks to the melted cheese.  The Swiss chard ribs and leaves, cooked in vegetable stock for added flavor, are ready in just a few minutes.  After that, just assemble the quesadillas, heat, and eat.

Swiss Chard Quesadilla with Queso Fresco and Green Onions


1            lb        Swiss chard
1 1/2     Tbs       green onion, chopped 
1                      garlic clove, minced
2           Tbs      olive oil
1/2        tsp      sea salt
1/4        tsp      black pepper
1/3        cup     vegetable stock
1/2         cup    queso fresco, diced
4                     corn tortillas
                       olive oil for frying tortillas

  1. Cut the ribs and stems from the chard, and slice into thin slices.  Chop the leaves.
  2. Heat the olive oil over low heat, then add onions and cook until softened, about 2 minutes.  Add garlic and cook until golden, about 2 minutes.
  3. Add sliced chard stems, salt, and pepper and cook around four minutes. 
  4. Add chard leaves and stock, increase heat to medium, and cover.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until leaves are tender, about 5 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat.
  6. Layer half the cheese and chard filling on a tortilla.  Place another on top.  Repeat for second quesadilla.
  7. Heat a small amount of oil in a saute pan.  Heat one quesadilla at a time.  When one side is golden, flip and repeat.  Remove from heat and repeat with second quesadilla.  Serve immediately.
Printable Recipe

Other Swiss Chard recipes from Vegetable Matter:
Flatbread with Swiss Chard Puree, Tomme de Savoie and Fake Bacon
Swiss Chard Rib Gratin with Pine Nuts and Parmesan
Flatbread with Swiss Chard, Kale, Brown Butter and Ricotta Salata


  1. mmmh...yummy and good for you. What more could you ask for?

  2. These look fabulous! What a wonderful idea--I love the corn tortillas in this shot, they just look amazing!

  3. I like the look of those quesadillas! very inviting!

  4. I agree! These look very tasty!

  5. We don't have those taco trucks in this area of Calif. How interesting that they're so popular.

    I enjoy quesadillas as a snack or quickie meal (when I'm cooking for myself). Really like your more healthful alternative.

  6. Once again this looks soooo delicious.

  7. yumm swiss chard and cheese soo good....


Comments welcome

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.