My wife Mary Jane and I are joining our friends Bill and Roberta for a week at their house in Cabo San Lucas at the bottom of Baja California. Of course, I will have a complete report when I return, but before I leave I wanted to give you a preview of what’s to come. One of our writers for the Fiery Foods & Barbecue SuperSite, Matthew Dexter, lives there and covered the food for us. He notes, “I lived in Baja California Sur for two years before moving to Cabo last year; doing so has brought me one step closer to burning the roof of my mouth off.” He also says that “there is so much more to the food of Los Cabos than just fish tacos. This area is home to ferocious foods that will make your tongue explode and your eyes water. You will breathe fire after you try these unique dishes, which we call enchiloso (fiery).” That said, he could not resist including a recipe similar to fish tacos, but one that includes a bit of cheese. Oh, and you can read Matthew’s complete article here.
Make sure to keep an eye on your quesadillas while they’re cooking; you don’t want to overcook the cheese, which should ooze gradually into the fish to create a mixed and delicious flavor. You can substitute any type of fish for
1 tablespoon butter
2 12-inch tortillas (the largest kind you can find, usually considered big enough for burritos)
1/3 cup Monterey jack cheese, shredded
1/3 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 large tomato, chopped
2 teaspoons diced onion
2 teaspoons diced jalapeño peppers
1/4 pound smoked marlin, cut into thin narrow strips
1/4 teaspoon cilantro
1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder
In a large cast-iron skillet or griddle, melt the butter. Place one of the tortillas in the pan, and quickly sprinkle the cheese in the center portion of the tortilla, leaving about an inch or so uncovered on the outer edges. Spread the tomato, onion, peppers, and the delicious smoked marlin strips over the melting cheese. Sprinkle the cilantro, chipotle, (and any spices, peppers, salts, or other such seasonings you want to experiment with) on the fresh marlin. Next, place the second tortilla over the quesadilla. Cook for 2 minutes, allowing the bottom tortilla to reach a golden-brown hue.
Successfully flipping the hot quesadilla over to the other side without losing all the contents is a risky maneuver. I recommend using a spatula and proceeding with caution: slow and meticulous is better than trying to show off for your friends, family members, or any pets in the kitchen. I usually use my hands and I usually regret that strategy.
Whatever method you use, as soon as you’ve done that flip, brown the bottom tortilla for another couple of minutes. Once it’s golden and cooked to perfection, take it out of the pan (carefully) and slice it up into four, six, or eight symmetrical pieces. Then serve it with salsa, jalapenos, and any side dishes you desire.
Yield: 2 servings
Heat Scale: Medium
For more food history and recipes on the subjects of Mexican and Southwestern cuisine, just click on the image below.