Quesadillas are one of our favorite meatless meals right now: homemade whole wheat tortillas (recipe follows) with homemade refried beans (ridiculously easy -- recipe follows) and cheddar cheese. Spread some refried beans on a tortilla, sprinkle cheese, top with another tortilla, cook on griddle till hot through, flipping once. You can always serve with sour cream, chopped tomato, homemade guac/chopped avocado, onion & so forth if you like. Don't be intimidated by the homemade tortillas, they might turn out lopsided but they're pretty easy. (They do have a several-hour "sitting" period.) Kids love to "help" with this one too
Makes a big batch, but you'll be surprised how fast they go!
5 c whole wheat pastry
1/2 cup shortening or lard
2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 cups boiling water
more flour for rolling
In a big bowl, stir together flour & salt. Rub in the shortening by hand until the mixture is the texture of oatmeal. Make a well in the center, and pour in the boiling water. Mix with a wooden spoon -- the water will incorporate really fast. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface & knead till no longer sticky, and smooth.
Make balls the size of golf balls, about 2 ounces each. Place them on a tray, and cover with a cloth. Let stand for at least 1 hour, or up to 8 hours.
Heat a griddle or large frying pan over medium-high heat. Roll out dough balls 1 at a time; they make tortillas about 6" across. If you flatten them into discs first, then roll out with a light touch & rolling out from the center in all directions, like the spokes of a wheel, they're more likely to turn out round.
Fry for 10 seconds or until a big bubble puffs up. Flip. Cook another 30 seconds or so, till other side is nicely browned too. Roll out the next tortilla while you wait for that one to cook. Repeat till all are cooked. Freezes really well in airtight container.
Soak 1c beans (pinto are traditional, but small black beans are super yummy) in 4c water or stock in the fridge overnight. Put water, beans & all in a medium saucepan; bring to boil, then reduce heat & simmer 2 hours or till beans smoosh easily with a fork. Remove from heat. Drain the extra liquid out, but don't throw it away.
Season beans with chili, garlic, onion and some salt. Mash the heck out of those beans with a potato masher, adding a little liquid back in as you need it to get a nice consistency. (You could probably use an electric hand mixer, too, but I'm not sure.)
Heat 2 Tb. lard or oil in a heavy frying pan. Add mashed beans, stir and "fry" till heated through again. (I've skipped this step, though, and just used the mashed beans.)
Completed quesadillas -- tortilla, beans and cheese -- freeze nicely in stacks, I've found. Then when you want one, microwave it (flip it halfway through). Not as nice as the ones made on the griddle, but still yummy.