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  • Krista A. Parr

Spicy Yam & Black Bean Quesadilla


Sweet, roasted yams and hearty black beans are a match made in whole food heaven, as far as my taste buds are concerned. Throw in some spicy home made taco seasoning, antioxidant-rich spinach, sharp cheddar cheese, and sprouted grain tortillas and you are WINNING at dinnertime! Need a meal that is high in protein, fiber, calcium, potassium, iron, zinc, B vitamins, and ‘slow’ carbohydrates? These quesadillas check all the boxes, with simply delicious being number one!

It can be hard to find healthy soft tortillas, so I recommend buying corn tortillas (which are usually made with only 2 ingredients!) or the brand I note below. Please avoid tortillas that contain sugar, hydrogenated oils, and a long list of preservatives that you can't pronounce.

Spicy Yam & Black Bean Quesadillas

Makes 5 quesadillas

Ingredients:

1 medium-sized yam, chopped into ¼ inch thick pieces

1 medium-sized cooking onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

½ a yellow bell pepper & ½ a red bell pepper, chopped (or use a whole red or yellow pepper)

1 bunch fresh spinach, washed and roughly chopped

Approx. 1.5 cups cooked black beans. I cooked mine from dried in my new instant pot, but you could use a 15 oz can of black beans, rinsed and drained well.

5 wholegrain soft tortillas – I use “Food for Life” brand “Ezekiel 4:9” tortillas, which contain nothing but organic sprouted grains and sea salt.

200g (1 pkg) organic aged raw cheddar cheese, shredded

2 Tablespoons taco seasoning (see recipe below)

Coconut oil for cooking

Plain whole yogurt for dipping

Taco Seasoning:

Put all these spices in a jar and shake well:

1 Tbsp. chili powder

1 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. paprika

1/2 tsp. oregano

1/2 tsp. onion powder

1/4 tsp. Himalayan or sea salt

1/4 tsp. black pepper

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375F while you’re chopping the yam. Roast the yams in about 1.5 Tbsp coconut oil and a dusting of sea salt and black pepper for about 25 minutes, until cooked through but not mushy.

While yams are roasting, chop the rest of the veggies and shred the cheese. Heat about 1.5 Tbsp coconut oil in a large pan over med-high heat. Sautee onion until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the bell peppers, cook for another 3-4 minutes and then add the spinach. Cook until just wilted and add the black beans, garlic, roasted yams, and taco seasoning. Stir to combine well.

Lay the tortillas out on 2 pans and fill half of each tortilla with the toppings. First some cheese, then some bean mixture, then some more cheese. Fold in half and place in the oven, still at 375F from roasting the yams. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, flipping the quesadillas over halfway through baking. They should be nice and golden and crispy on the edges.

For easier chopping, allow the quesadillas to cool for a few minutes on a cutting board before chopping into 4 pieces.

Serve with plain yogurt and guacamole, if you like.

These are GREAT reheated in the toaster oven the next day – the flavour deepens and I swear they taste even better!


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