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Kitchen Mailbox Countdown to Dinner Dining
Countdown to Dinner: BBQ quesadillas a versatile favorite

Thursday, December 02, 1999

Tested by Becky Sodergren

There's nothing like a meal prepared in 20 minutes that has a little zing to it, too.

Chris Catley of Hopewell has already had one recipe featured in the Countdown to Dinner column. This is her second, and BBQ Quesadillas is a winner.

A kitchen consultant for Pampered Chef, Catley prepared this Pampered Chef-created recipe for the home-based parties where the company's merchandise is sold. There, she uses the quesadillas as an appetizer, cutting them into triangles -- but at home, she's found she can leave them whole for a filling meal.

What she likes about this recipe is that it can be prepared with different flavors of barbecue sauce, such as mustard.

We'd add that we think this recipe would be good with picante sauce or cheese soup replacing the barbecue sauce -- and maybe throw in a few black beans.

"I make this with a salad or fresh fruit, and I know I've done my part -- I've given my family their vegetables, meat and starch" all wrapped up in one, she said.

The only drawback is that her children -- Bobby, 6, and Brandi, 2 -- won't eat this yet because they don't like peppers and onions. "They're still eating chicken nuggets and grilled cheese," Catley admits. But husband Bob likes it fine, and so do we.

For her efforts, Catley wins a cookbook. You could, too -- just enter your own recipe by following the rules below. --

BBQ Quesadillas

8 (6- to 7-inch) flour tortillas
3 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 12 ounces)
1/2 cup barbecue sauce, any flavor
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 cup Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 425.

Cut chicken breast into strips and sauté in a nonstick skillet until cooked. Place cooked chicken in a mixing bowl. Add barbecue sauce, peppers and onions.

Line cookie sheet with 4 flour tortillas. Divide mixture evenly and spread over 4 tortillas. Sprinkle each with shredded cheese. Top each one off with another tortilla. Spray each tortilla with cooking spray.

Bake 8 to 10 minutes. Cool 5 minutes. Serve.

Do you have an entrée, salad or vegetable side dish recipe (no desserts, please!) that can be made in 30 minutes or less from six ingredients or fewer (not counting water, salt and pepper)? Share it with Countdown to Dinner.

The PG tests all recipes and if we select your recipe for publication, you'll receive a free selection from our cookbook grab bag of current releases.

Send your recipe to Countdown to Dinner, Post-Gazette Food, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh, PA 15222, or fax to 412-263-1313. Please include your name, neighborhood and daytime phone number. Or e-mail to: nanderson@post-gazette.com Questions? Call 412-263-1760.

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