Blue Corn & Cheese Quesadillas with Courgette Flowers

Rick Stein's recipe for Blue Corn Quesadillas with cheese and courgette flowers, as seen on his BBC series, The Road to Mexico, teaches you to make tortillas from scratch.

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These tortilla turnovers filled with cheese come from Xochimilco market, 20 miles or so from the centre of Mexico City. Pronounced ‘Sochimilco’, the market is right next to an area of wetlands that contains artificial islands called chinampas, where all the vegetables in the market will have been grown. The quesadillas were made from blue corn and were oozing with melted cheese and wilted courgette flowers cooked on the plancha. They use Swiss chard there when courgette flowers are out of season, or you could also use spinach.

Serves 4-6


2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely sliced
1 finely chopped green jalapeño chilli or a good pinch of dried chilli flakes
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
250g courgette flowers, Swiss chard or spinach, washed and shredded
200g mozzarella, coarsely grated or thinly sliced
150g Lancashire cheese, crumbled
Salt, to taste
12 x 15cm blue corn tortillas (please see more information in the instructions)


To make the tortillas, see the recipe here.

Heat the oil in a saucepan and cook the onion, chopped chilli and garlic until soft but not coloured. Add the courgette flowers, chard or spinach to the pan with just the water that clings after washing. Allow the greens to wilt over the heat for a few minutes, while you grate or slice the cheese, then season with a little salt and the chilli flakes, if that’s what you’re using.

Lay a tortilla in a dry pan and sprinkle some of the mozzarella and Lancashire cheeses all over the surface. Add some of the courgette flower or greens mixture, then fold the tortilla in half to make a semi-circular parcel. Once the cheese is starting to melt, flip the quesadilla over and continue to cook until the cheese is oozing.

Remove the quesadilla from the pan and keep it warm while you make the rest. Cut into wedges and serve immediately with salsas.

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