Smoked Cheddar Quesadillas with Warm Maple-Apple Compote

January 8, 2009

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Sometimes in the gift basket business I tend to overstock items that I love. Such is the case with Grafton Village Maple-Smoked Cheddar. When an item reaches its expiration date, I can’t sell it… even though it still tastes great. That means I have to eat it myself. Yea! This recipe evolved when I found that my cheddar had reached its expiration date and the sack of apples I had bought to make a pie (and didn’t) were getting a bit old. Pair these hearty nibbles with a nice Cabernet Sauvignon at your next get-together. Your guests will love you for it.

SMOKED CHEDDAR QUESADILLAS WITH WARM MAPLE-APPLE COMPOTE

Long name. Short prep time. Substitute pecans for the walnuts, if you wish. Almost any apple will work for this. I prefer Granny Smith or Gala. This recipe can easily be doubled or tripled to serve more.

For the Compote:

Peel and core 4 apples and slice into thin wedges. Melt 2 tablespoons unsalted butter in a large sauté pan. Add the apples, ¼ cup pure maple syrup, ½ teaspoon cinnamon (or more, to taste), juice of ½ lemon and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Sauté for 30 to 40 minutes, or until apples are very soft and liquid is slightly thickened. Serve warm with Smoked Cheddar Quesadillas.

For the Quesadillas:

Sprinkle one side of an 8-inch flour tortilla with 1/3 cup shredded smoked cheddar; top with 2 tablespoons chopped, toasted walnuts. Fold tortilla over filling. Coat a nonstick skillet with cooking spray and cook quesadilla over medium heat for 2 minutes on each side or until cheese melts. Remove quesadilla to a cutting board and slice into wedges. Makes 2 servings. Serve with Warm Maple-Apple Compote.

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