Monday, October 24, 2011

Tandoori Chicken Quesadillas

Now, normally I despise fusion food. If you're going to eat ethnic food, eat food from that specific country. There's no need to hybridize food by mixing cultures. Generally, I stay away from restaurants that have the word fusion written in their description. I just don't understand it. In my ignorance (or innocence?) I have gone to fusion restaurants in the past and in one they had naan on the menu for an appetizer and then I ate szchechuan eggplant for my meal! (And I had to pay extra for rice! But that's neither here or there.) Generally, I've found that when you have fusion restaurants you can't be authentic and when I eat ethnic food I prefer for it to be authentic. (Now, I will frequent Pei Wei only because it's right by the house and I like the Honey Ginger tofu and vegetables. Pei Wei boasts itself in being Asian fusion, basically serving foods from every East Asian country, but lets be real their food is far from authentic. They serve a chicken salad. Last I checked, I've never seen that in Asia, it's a good salad, but no so authentic. Thus proving my point that fusion food is not authentic. So basically I appreciate it for what it is and the fact that it's close to my house.)

So, after that rant why did I make tandoori chicken quesadillas? Well, I must admit that I make some good tandoori chicken that's pretty authentic. (Of course it is, it's my Mommy's recipe!) And my quesadillas, well, are quesadillas even authentic Mexican food? I think it's more Tex-Mex anyways. I found a recipe for making quesadillas in my kiddie Williams Sonoma cookbook that bakes it in the oven. I've been making quesadillas this way for quite some time and always put in chicken and vegetables. When I put in chicken I make a basic marinade from my indian spice dubba. Not quite tandoori chicken, but similar spices. I realized last week that I hadn't made tandoori chicken in quite some time and decided I wanted some. (This is chicken that I like!) I was trying to decide what to do with the chicken when I realized that I had a craving for quesadillas. So I merged the two ideas and tandoori chicken quesadillas it was!

The recipe came out really well! Basically it was grilled chicken quesadillas, and tasted oh so good. I also added some fresh corn off the cob and green peppers to make it a full meal. Yummy stuff! Great with a side of guacamole (or as I make it, simple mashed avocados.)

No original link for this one, all made on my own. Well, the tandoori chicken is my mom's recipe.

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts slicked thinly
1/2 cup plain, fat free yogurt
2 teaspoons tandoori masala
1 teaspoon jeera powder (Or 1/2 teaspoon cumin + 1/2 teaspoon corriander)
1 teaspoon red masala (or chili powder)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 ears of corn, with kernels chopped off
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
12 tortillas
1/2 teaspoon olive oil per tortilla (1/4 teaspoon per side)

1. Marinade chicken over night in fat free yogurt, tandoori masala, jeera powder, red masala, garlic powder and salt.

2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Take a cookie sheet and line the bottom with aluminum foil. Place a cooling rack on top of the foil and spray with cooking spray. Place chicken pieces on rack. Brush each piece of chicken with olive oil and place in oven for 15 minutes. Take out, flip over and brush with olive oil and cook for another 15 minutes. Take chicken out when cooked through. One chicken has cooled, dice.

 Before going into the oven.

After coming out of the oven.

2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease three cooking sheets with cooking spray. (If you don't have enough cookie sheets, whenever you finish making the first batch, put the next batch in.)

3. Brush each tortilla with olive oil on both sides. Lay two tortillas on a cookie sheet. Sprinkle generously with chicken, corn, bell pepper and shredded cheese. Place a tortilla on top. Place in oven and cook 10 minutes per side. (Be careful flipping, everything tends to fall out!)

4. Remove from oven and cut with a pizza cutter. Voila! Dinner is served! Makes 6 quesadillas.

Amateur Cooking Difficulty Scale: 6 
This one does take some work because there are numerous steps, but it's so well worth it. The grilled chicken tastes so good in these quesadillas. This is great for a meal or for appetizers at a party.

I make these oven baked quesadillas a fair amount. I don't always use tandoori chicken, I often just use a basic chicken, but it came out so good this way that I'll have to try it again!


  1. Looks absolutely yummy! I love fusing two culturals together and you did it just right!!

  2. tandoori chicken.... I buy the stuff in bulk from my fave kabob shop and use it like a roaster chicken... there is something magical about that taste!