I've been avoiding my favorite comfort food. What kind of craziness is that, you say? I used to eat mashed potato quesadillas weekly. Shredded cheese from a bag, instant mashed potatoes from a pouch...hard to believe, but it was my guilty pleasure. The ingredients in those potatoes would stump this year's National Spelling Bee winner. In my own defense, I did use whole wheat tortillas. Okay, that's lame. Anyway, I've been avoiding making these after becoming vegan. Regardless of the nutritional nightmare they must have been, I didn't believe I could make a vegan quesadilla that would come close to their comfort food goodness. You detect foreshadowing here, right?
Then along comes the Weekend Wokking event, started by Wandering Chopsticks, and hosted this month by White on Rice Couple. The ingredient is ....potatoes! No wok required. I find White on Rice Couple's blog so entertaining. They aren't vegan, but are very vegan friendly, even offering a Joy of Soy intro to tofu. But what hooked me, in addition to the great photos, is the dog videos. Y'all have got to check out Dante, the Pupper-atti Dog Tenor. So these guys inspired me to take a stab at veganizing my favorite, mashed potato quesadillas.
Which in my home will be AKA "Treat Yourself Right Quesadillas". They were even better than I hoped. Who doesn't deserve a quesadilla slathered with roasted garlic potatoes, chipotle-spiked black beans, cilantro, corn, and red onion? Hello again, favorite comfort food, what took me so long!
The following recipes will likely make larger amounts than you'll need for a meal of quesadillas. But tortillas vary in size so it's hard to tell exactly how much stuffing you'll need. The leftovers will not be a problem to finish off in other ways, I assure you.
Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes
10 cloves garlic
1 pound organic Yukon Gold potatoes, cut in 1/2 to 1-inch chunks
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
Remove outer papery skins from garlic cloves but don't peel. Pan roast the cloves in a covered skillet over medium heat. Shake the skillet frequently to mix the cloves up. Roast until soft. Mine took about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool. Peel and mince.
Cover the potato chunks with cold water. Add salt. Boil until tender. Mine took about 25 minutes. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Drain the potatoes.
Place potatoes, oil, and garlic in a bowl. Mash with a potato masher, adding reserved cooking liquid until you get your desired texture. Salt and pepper to taste.
tortillas (I used spinach)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
juice from 1/2 small lime
1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
roasted garlic mashed potatoes
red onion, diced
salsa as a condiment
Place the beans, lime juice, and chipotle powder in a bowl. Mash beans with potato masher so that some of the beans are mashed but some remain intact. You want a spreadable mixture.
Spread the bean mixture on the entire surface of a tortilla. Spread the mashed potatoes over half of the surface. Sprinkle onion, corn, and cilantro on top of the mashed potatoes. Fold tortilla over in half so that your bean mixture is on the top and bottom with mashed potatoes in the middle.
Fry in a skillet until heated through and slightly browned on both sides. Serve with salsa.
Edited to note the Potato Round-Up here!