Condiments Cooking for Everyone Dinner Ideas Main Mexican


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Summer weather is ideal for treating your family to Mexican Food and what tastes better than Grilled Shrimp nestling inside a Quesadilla?  Add to that freshly made Guacamole and Salsa Cruda.  A little salad and some Mexican Rice and you are set for the evening.  Sound like too much work – well maybe a little but it is also fun if you love to cook and simple enough for those of you who do not love to cook.  Follow the directions and photos below and you will be able to cook up a wonderful meal for your family or even for your next party!  Okay, let’s get busy!


The first thing you need to do is check up on the items that you have in your kitchen and then make a list of those that you will need to purchase.  Follow the simple suggestions below or create your own list.


Flour Tortillas

Olive Oil


Garlic & Cilantro

Shrimp   (preferably large ones – they have more flavor)

Tomatoes & Avocadoes

Cheese for Quesadillas (your preference)

Sour Cream or Mexican Crema


Here are the  links for the recipes for the Grilled Shrimp

Salsa and Guacamole.


Once you have your ingredients on hand and know when you are going to be serving the Quesadillas you can plan your preparation.  The Salsa can be prepared hours ahead of time, unlike the Guacamole which tends to oxidize and become unappetizing in appearance.  The  Shrimp can be shelled and de-veined, but you do NOT WANT TO MARINATE them for more than 20 minutes before grilling, otherwise they will become mealy, mushy and not appetizing at all.


Probably Quesadillas are not going to be the only thing on your menu so you can prepare the other items ahead.  Re-fried Beans can be prepared hours ahead and reheated as can Mexican Rice.  If you are planning on having a salad, the components can be washed, dried and sliced and then refrigerated until just before serving time.


Shown below is a suggested timetable for preparation and serving.  To prepare this meal and have everything come together at the proposed time,  I would start the preparations no later than two hours before serving time.


1.     Wash, dry and slice, grate or dice Salad Ingredients.

2.     Prepare Salsa and refrigerate.

3.     Cook the re-fried Beans and set aside.  If you are using canned re-fried beans, saute some diced             onion in a little Olive Oil before adding the beans.  Also, if you are using canned beans, prepared             just before serving.  Home-made re-fried beans take hours to prepare, especially if you are using           dried beans that have to be soaked and cooked.  Actually, the canned ones are very good,                     especially if you doctor them up a little bit with the sauteed onions and anything else that                     you may  wish, like maybe cilantro.

4.     Make the Mexican Rice and set aside.    Mexican Rice

5.     Shred your Cheese or Cheeses, depending on whether you use one or more varieties.

6.     About 30 minutes before serving time, prepare your Guacamole.  To prevent it from oxidizing                 squeeze a thin layer of Lime Juice on the surface and then cover with plastic wrap.  Refrigerate           until serving time.

7.     Prepare the Shrimp – remove the Shrimp Shells and save to make Seafood Stock.  If using                     medium size Shrimp, slit down the back and remove the vein.  Wash and dry.  If using large                   Shrimp, slice in half lengthwise.  Be sure to remove the vein.  Wash and dry.

8.     Prepare the marinade per the directions in the Grilled Shrimp Recipe.  Allow the Shrimp to                     marinate for at least 15 minutes but no longer than 20.  (Marinating the Shrimp too long will                 make them mushy and mealy.)

Marinating the Shrimp
Marinating the Shrimp

9.     Before grilling the shrimp, make sure you have all your other dishes ready to serve.  Grill the                  Shrimp per the recipe directions.

10.   Place  2-3  Tablespoons of shredded Cheese in the middle of a Flour Tortilla; top with 3-4 pieces of          Shrimp 2-3 Tbsps. more  Cheese and a few sliced Scallions.  Add a second Tortilla on top.


Filling the Tortillas
Filling the Tortillas – ingredients on bottom half – top half not yet added




11.  Place the filled Tortillas on a lightly greased skillet or comal (griddle) and cook on each side until              golden in color and the Cheese begins to melt.  (If you have trouble keeping the two tortillas        together, secure them with wooden sandwich picks – remove the picks before serving.

12.   Remove from the griddle with a spatula; remove the sandwich picks and serve.

13.   Serve Guacamole, Salsa and Sour Cream on the side.


  Salsa Cruda
Salsa Cruda




Chunky Guacamole
Chunky Guacamole



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