Pears and cheese make an unlikely but irresistible duo in these Monterey Jack Quesadillas with Pear Salsa
What’s not to love about quesadillas? Their ooey-gooey cheesiness is adored by most everyone, including my family, and this meatless version of Monterey Jack Quesadillas with Pear Salsa is one of our favorites. When my kids get a vote for dinner, this is one of the first dishes they mention. How’s that for an endorsement?
The pear salsa totally makes this dish. It’s not the mouth-on-fire type of hot salsa that my husband loves to dip with his chips. No, we’re talking sweet, juicy pears that are well-matched to the amount of heat and spice in the jalapeño and black pepper. More like a sweet heat that’s very family-friendly. And the addition of mint is killer. Unexpected, yes, but it gives the salsa a bright, fresh flavor. When paired with the smooth, creamy melted Monterey Jack (sprinkled with a few savory green onions), you have a match made in heaven. I know, I know, it sounds dramatic, but come to my house and see how much my kids love these quesadillas. They shovel them in like there is no tomorrow. (Full disclosure: I’ve been guilty of shoveling them in, too.)
P.S. Yes, we usually eat these as a quick and easy dinner, but they work equally well as a crowd-pleasing appetizer for guests. Feel free to use any pear you like in the salsa, but I’ve found that d’anjou pears are a little firmer (even when ripe) and hold up better to the acidity of the lime juice.