For this week's at home happy hour I am bringing my very best quesadilla game for you guys!
When I was like 12, my Mom went back to work and my Dad and I were off to fend for ourselves for a weeknight dinners. We spent the first few weeks frequenting fast food places and restaurants.
Finally, we bit the bullet and we're going to make something at home. I was still a pretty picky eater at age 12 and didn't have a very wide range of food groups.
I would, however, eat a quesadilla. A very plain, only cheese filled quesadilla. (Now, I'll literally eat anything in a quesadilla).
I remember he said 'Do you want some bacon in it' and even then I was like 'eh, I guess'. Looking back at I really was a strange kid, who the heck says no to cheese and bacon?!
So there we were eating our cheese and bacon quesadillas. We had finally gotten somewhere without the help of carls jr or in n out. Till this day whenever I eat a quesadilla, I think about those first weeknights fending for ourselves.
Which brings me to this week's at home happy hour quesadilla!
Not going to lie. These quesadillas we're 100% inspired by my Dad's... and el pollo loco. Don't laugh! Ha! Working in events sometimes you have some extremely long 12+ hour days. On my commute home sometimes I have this a-ha moment that I haven't eaten since my teeny cup of yogurt that morning. Sometimes Other ways are more organic, but sometimes I find inspiration for this blog in the weirdest of ways.
If you love a good cheesy appetizer that has a different flavor profile in every bite, then these are for you!
Layered with melty cheese, juicy chicken, cool avocado, sweet corn and salty bacon. I'm not a fan of 'warm' avocado (it's like hot lettuce to me) but it heats up just enough that you still get that cool avocado creaminess! Since corn is so fresh this time of year I had to throw some in. I flash cooked it with some of the bacon fat. It is a little on the decadent side but each layer just adds so much flavor!
I never thought a quesadilla could taste fancy but this one certainly does. Like the rest of the at home happy hours this recipe is still super simple and can be whipped up really fast. Most of the ingredients you will have in your fridge. I grilled some fresh chicken thighs for these but you could totally swap for leftover chicken you have or rotisserie chicken.
For this week's cocktail pairing I had to go with a classic margarita. Honestly, most Friday's I usually have a marg and I certainly have one when their is Mexican food involved. Scroll down below for this easy pairing!
Cheesy Chicken Avocado
& Bacon Quesadillas
.75-1lb of chicken thighs
3 Tablespoons of olive oil
1 Teaspoon of garlic salt
1 Teaspoon of pepper
Juice of half a lemon
4-5 Strips of bacon, cut into small chunks
One ear of corn
2 Cups of cheddar cheese
1 Avocado, thinly sliced
1 Small can of green chillies, divided
Serve with: diced avocado, pico de gallo and chopped cilantro
*Note these ingredients yield two quesadillas
Season chicken with salt and pepper. On a grill (I use a cast iron grill pan) drizzle 1 tbs of olive oil on chicken, cook each side 5-7 minutes or until chicken reaches 165 degrees F. Chop chicken into strips, drizzle with fresh lime juice and set aside.
In a small pan add in bacon pieces and cook on medium heat. Add in corn from one ear or one cup of canned corn to bacon. Turn heat to medium-low and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Transfer bacon-corn mixture with a slotted spoon to a separate bowl.
In a cast iron or large pan heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil on medium-high heat. Add in one tortilla. Top the tortilla evenly with half of cheese, chicken, bacon-corn mixture, 1/2 avocado, and 2-3 tablespoons of green chillies. Top with other tortilla. Cook quesadilla for 2-3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Serve with plenty of pico de gallo, diced avocado and fresh cilantro.
1 Ounce of orange liqueur ( I prefer cointreau or grand marnier)
1 Ounce of fresh lime juice
2 Ounces of your favorite tequila
Run a lime wedge around the top of a glass and dip into kosher salt. Shake excess off and fill glass with ice. Add in tequila, orange liqueur and lime juice. Gently stir and serve with a lime wedge.
*If you're going out tonight: add a float of extra orange liqueur on top.
*If you're feeling leisurely: add ingredients to a shaker filled with ice and give it a shake like a real bartender