This post was created in partnership with the California Avocado Commission. All opinions are our own.
Spring is springing, and the Husbands are singing. It’s the peak of California Avocado season and we have a new recipe featuring this fabulous fruit, filled with golden sunshine and ready to light up your table! It’s been fun partnering with California Avocados this year—in March, their theme was creating dishes that use little to no food waste, and we made a delicious hearty pasta that comes together in just minutes. This month’s theme is “heritage cooking,” so today we’re excited to share a tasty new recipe that reminds us of home. Adam grew up in Southern California and Ryan has lived here for more than half his life, so Mexican cuisine has always been an integral part of our relationship—whether we’re ordering vegan tacos from a local food truck on a Saturday date night, or enjoying chiles rellenos and jalapeño-cucumber margaritas at one of our favorite Mexican restaurants around town. Pack your sandals and extra pairs of shorts, and don’t forget your sunglasses, because today you’re taking a trip to Southern California to enjoy a little taste of our neighborhood. Yes, you’ll probably spot a celebrity or two, but the highlight of your trip will certainly be this star. Will you please welcome to your table… Kimchi Quesadillas with Swiss Cheese and Avocado.
These melt-in-your-mouth quesadillas are easy to prepare. First, you sauté kimchi in butter, turning this traditional Korean delicacy into a tender and spicy filling. You can certainly buy a jar of kimchi from the store, but feel free to kick things up a notch and make it yourself. We have a delicious vegetarian version on our blog, and it is truly more flavorful than anything you can find in a market—but whatever you decide, your quesadillas will turn out perfectly.
You can enjoy this one-pan meal for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. To keep things simple, we use the same skillet that the kimchi cooks in to make the quesadillas—plus, the spicy sauce left in the pan from the kimchi adds flavor to the tortillas and helps develop a crispy golden exterior. Inside, this colorful dish is layered with deliciousness. Filled with melty swiss cheese, arugula, thinly sliced Fresh California Avocados, cilantro, and sprinkled with sesame seeds, this gorgeous entrée is served with a zesty lime crema for dipping. Made with greek yogurt, lime juice, and salt, this silky sauce is absolutely delightful and brings a tangy flavor to these spicy snacks. Each quesadilla uses half of a Fresh California Avocado, making these crispy bites extra creamy inside. Cooked to perfection and topped with cilantro and sesame seeds, we promise we won’t tell anyone if you end up making these more than once—or five times—in a week. To ensure you’re enjoying locally grown California Avocados, be sure to check for California on the label from spring through summer, and enjoy a taste of our home in every bite.
Kimchi Quesadillas with Swiss Cheese and Avocado
Makes 1 quesadilla, serves 1 to 2
For the lime crema:
6 tablespoons (100 g) greek yogurt
1/2 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1/8 teaspoon salt
For the quesadilla:
1 tablespoon salted butter, divided
1/3 cup (65 g) kimchi, store-bought or homemade, roughly chopped
2 flour tortillas (about 8 inches wide)
3 slices (70 g) swiss cheese, torn into pieces (see note)
1 handful (about 5 g) arugula
1/2 ripe, Fresh California Avocado, peeled and seed removed
pinch of salt
1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish
1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds, plus more for garnish
To make the lime crema:
In a small bowl, stir together the greek yogurt, lime juice, and salt until smooth and evenly blended. Set aside.
To make the quesadilla:
Place a skillet over medium heat, and when hot, add 1/2 tablespoon of salted butter. When melted, add the chopped kimchi and cook, stirring often, until the kimchi is tender and begins to caramelize, 4 to 6 minutes. Turn off heat and transfer the kimchi to a small bowl, and set aside.
Place one of the tortillas on a plate or cutting board. Scatter the cheese evenly over the tortilla in an even layer. Then sprinkle the arugula over the cheese. Slice the avocado half into very thin slices, and arrange the slices in a single layer over the arugula and cheese, covering the entire surface of the quesadilla. Sprinkle the avocado with a pinch of salt, then top with the chopped cilantro and sesame seeds. Place the second tortilla over the top to complete the assembly.
Place the skillet you used for the kimchi over medium heat, and when hot, add the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of salted butter. When melted, place the quesadilla in the pan and cook until the underside is golden, about 2 to 3 minutes. Carefully flip the quesadilla and cook until the second side is golden and the cheese inside is melty, about 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a heatproof cutting board or serving plate, and cut into quarters. Garnish with additional chopped cilantro and sesame seeds, and serve with the lime crema for dipping. Enjoy!
— The lime crema can be prepared in advance, and will stay fresh, covered in the refrigerator, for up to one week.
— If using shredded or grated swiss cheese, you will use about 2/3 cup (70 g) of shredded cheese.
— To make this recipe vegan, use nondairy yogurt in the crema, vegan butter to cook the kimchi and quesadilla, and a nondairy cheese of your choice instead of swiss cheese.