We know two sides of Mexican food: the cheesy Tex-Mex dishes that can be a life saver on doom-filled Sundays and the fresh, zingy dishes that we’ve devoured in Mexico and good Mexican restaurants. It’s Tuesday, and we’re feeling pretty good about life, so we want the latter. So does Thomasina Miers, winner of MasterChef 2005 and the brain behind Wahaca. She first visited Mexico when she was 18 and was struck by the true Mexican approach to food: spontaneous, shared and nutritious. She’s collected the best recipes in her new book, Wahaca – Mexican Food At Home (Hodder & Stoughton, £20), and we’ve selected one that is perfect for this grey Tuesday…
Broad bean, pea and new potato quesadilla
225g new potatoes
5 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for brushing
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 green chilli, de-seeded and finely chopped
200g frozen broad beans
100g frozen petit pois
Juice of 1 lime
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Small handful each of mint and tarragon leaves, finely chopped
45g feta cheese, crumbled
80g cheddar cheese, grated
Steam or cook the potatoes in salted, boiling water until they are tender, then drain and set aside. Heat a heavy-bottomed frying pan over a high heat and when it is hot add 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Turn the heat to medium, throw in the onion, garlic and chilli and cook for around 10 minutes, until the onion has softened. Meanwhile, bring a medium pan of salted water to the boil, add the broad beans and cook for about 3 minutes before adding the peas. Cook for a further 3-4 minutes, until the legumes are just tender. With the back of a fork, gently mash the potatoes into the onion mix, seasoning with the lime juice, salt and pepper – bearing in mind that the feta is already salty. With your fork, gently fold in the rest of the olive oil, the peas, beans, herbs and feta. If the mixture looks dry, add another good glug of extra virgin olive oil.
Roughly spread a heaped tablespoonful of the mixture onto one half of each tortilla and sprinkle with the Cheddar. Fold the tortillas over into half-moon shapes, pressing the halves firmly together. Heat a frying pan or griddle pan, brush the quesadillas with olive oil on both sides and cook until golden and crisp on each side, and warmed through. Cut each quesadilla into 3 wedges and serve with your choice of salsas and ice-cold beer.