Salmon Quesadillas

Gruyere and Prosciutto in Puff Pastry

Makes about 40

Ingredients

1 sheet puff pastry (about a 9-1/2-inch square)

3 ounces thinly sliced Prosciutto (Bayonne ham may be substituted)

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil leaves

3/4 cup finely grated Gruyere cheese

1 egg, lightly beaten

Procedure

Lay the puff pastry sheet on a floured surface. Cut it in half so that you have two 9-1/2- x 4-3/4-inch pieces. Arrange one-half of the ham evenly on top of one piece of pastry, leaving a 1/2-inch border on one of the long edges. Sprinkle one-half of the basil and one-half of the cheese on top of the ham. Brush the border with beaten egg. Starting with the side opposite the egg-washed border, roll the pastry jelly-roll fashion into a log and wrap it in plastic wrap. Repeat with the second piece of pastry and remaining ingredients and chill the logs, seam side down, until firm, at least three hours or up to 3 days.

Preheat an oven to 400°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Cut the logs crosswise into 1/2-inch thick pinwheels and arrange one inch apart on the baking sheets. Bake the pinwheels in batches in the middle of the oven until golden, about 14 to 16 minutes. Transfer the pinwheels to a rack and cool slightly. Serve warm.

Smoked Salmon Quesadillas

Serves 6 (2 wedges each)

Ingredients

1/4 cup mild goat cheese

1/4 cup cream cheese, at room temperature

3 flour tortillas (8-inch in diameter)

1 poblano chile, roasted, peeled, seeded, and cut into strips

1 red bell pepper, roasted, peeled, seeded, and cut into strips

1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and cut into thin slices

1/4 cup finely chopped shallots

2 ounces smoked salmon, cut into strips

Procedure

In a small bowl, mix together goat cheese and cream cheese until smooth and creamy. Spread 1/3 of the mixture over half of each flour tortilla.

Divide poblano and red bell pepper strips evenly over the 3 halves of the flour tortillas. Layer avocado slices over pepper strips and top with chopped shallots. Divide salmon evenly among tortilla halves. Fold tortillas over, pressing to seal.

Heat a non-stick skillet over medium high heat and toast folded tortillas until the cheese melts and they are brown on one side. Turn over and brown on other side.

Cut each quesadilla into 4 wedges and serve immediately.

Roasted Red Bell Pepper Dip

This sunset red dip, with its unique taste of roasted garlic and red bell peppers brings out the best in any raw vegetable, but particularly raw chayote squash, jicama, broccoli, and cauliflower. It ‘s also delicious on crackers, baked potatoes or tossed with pasta.

Makes about 1-1/2 cups

Ingredients

5 cloves garlic, unpeeled

1 teaspoon olive oil

3 red bell peppers, roasted, peeled, and seeded

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

2 tablespoons crème fraîche (or sour cream)

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Procedure

Preheat oven to 350°F. Sprinkle olive oil over garlic cloves and wrap tightly in aluminum foil. Place in oven for 45 to 60 minutes, or until cloves are soft. Cool.

Squeeze the soft garlic cloves from their peels into a food processor or blender. Add red peppers and cumin; purée. Add cream cheese and blend until smooth. Transfer mixture to a bowl and fold in crème fraîche or sour cream; salt and pepper to taste. Serve as a dip with fresh raw vegetables or spread on toasts or crackers.

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