Um, hello second to last day of October. It’s Halloween tomorrow, have you got your costume sorted?
My costume, though alive and well in my brain, has not yet materialized in real life. I have watched an awful lot of youtube tutorials on how to make certain parts of it, and luckily tomorrow is a half day at work, so hopefully sometime between now and when I arrive at the Halloween party I’m going to, I’ll have created a totally awesome costume. And yes, I mean actually awe-inspiring.
Whether you’re heading to a Halloween party of your own or staying home to open the door for adorable trick or treaters (I sooooo miss adorable trick or treaters!) I’ve got just the thing for a quick and easy and super delicious Halloween Friday dinner.
Friends, meet black bean and pumpkin quesadillas.
Quesadillas, say hi to the nice people.
These quesadillas are a riff on my pumpkin and black bean taquitos, but without having to stand there and roll up a million tiny little taquitos (which, by the way, are great, freeze well, and are fantastic party food). Pumpkin and black bean go together like apple and pie, and they do well with the strong flavours of sharp cheddar cheese, cilantro, cumin, and coriander. Plus a little smoked paprika never hurt anybody. You can use canned pumpkin puree for the filling, or, since you’re probably hacking up a pumpkin anyways, roast your own.
Rather than frying, I baked these tortillas. It’s a huge time saver cause you can bake the entire batch in one go, and keeps things nice and healthy as we don’t need to add any oil. But if you prefer your quesadillas pan fried, be my guest. They’re your quesadillas!
Black beans are a good source of folate, dietary fiber, protein, phosphorus, iron, copper, magnesium, manganese, potassium and vitamin K. The protein-plus-fiber combination in black beans is one of the things that makes them special. A one cup serving contains 15g of fiber (over half of the daily recommended intake), and 15g of protein. Much of the fiber is indigestible, which supports digestive health, particularly in the lower part of our digestive tract. The protein-fiber combination is also key in stabilizing blood sugar levels, as both protein and fiber move through our digestive systems at a moderate pace. Black beans are also rich in soluble fiber, which is helpful for lowering blood cholesterol levels and supporting cardiovascular health. You know what they say, beans beans good for the heart… but if the second part of that rhyme concerns you, be sure to discard the soaking water when cooking dried beans. You’ll be tossing out a good amount of flatulence causing compounds, as well as some of the phytates and tannins that lower nutrient availability.
Pumpkin, and other yellow fleshed winter squash, are jam packed full of carotenes, which is the compound ultimately responsible for their colour, and also is a pre-cursor to Vitamin A (you need that so you can see). Pumpkin also contains a good dose of fibre, potassium, vitamin C, and manganese.
Two years ago: Chickpea Noodle Soup
pumpkin and black bean quesadillas
- 1 1/4 cup can black beans well rinsed if canned
- 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree
- 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 2 tsp hot smoked paprika
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp salt
- 6 medium whole grain tortillas
- Preheat your oven to 350°C / 180°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl combine black beans, pumpkin puree, grated cheddar, cilantro, cumin, coriander, smoked paprika, oregano, and salt. Mix well.
- Spread half of a medium tortilla with about 1/6 of the mixture, stopping about half an inch away from the edge (the mixture will expand a bit as it bakes), then folding the other half of the tortilla over to make a half moon shape.
- Repeat with remaining tortillas.
- Arrange the quesadillas on the prepared baking sheet, then pop in the oven,
- Bake for 10 minutes, then turn the quesadillas over, then bake for another 10 minutes on the other side.
- Remove from the oven, and serve immediately.
I like these quesadillas hot out of the oven, but they're also great cold or at room temperature.
Wrap extras in tinfoil for packed lunches.
You can also freeze them for future grab and go meals.