One of my homemade quesadillas

Origin of the Family Recipe

Ham and cheese quesadillas is a very simple recipe I learned from my father when I was 10 years old. My father used to work as the Vice President of Finance in Latin America for a corporation called Tech Data that buys and sells computers. He learned the recipe while he was on one of his business trips to Mexico City.

The JW Marriott hotel that he stayed at offered a buffet breakfast. One part of the buffet offered warm breakfast options like quesadillas. While my father was waiting in line, the cook started making a ham and cheese quesadilla for the man standing in front of him. The procedure was so quick and simple that my father said, "Is that really how easy it is to make one?" The cook then started to make another one, but this time slowly. He went through each step so that my father could see how easy it really was.

The step-by-step process took less than 12 minutes. It goes to show what you can learn just by starting up a conversation while waiting in line. When my father came home from his trip, he showed the recipe to me, and the recipe has been in my family ever since.



First, place your medium-sized pan onto a stove top and put the temperature on high. Then lay one thin layer of olive oil so that there is just enough to cover the whole pan. If you are using butter, place one table spoon of butter on the pan and spread the butter evenly throughout. Once that is done, lay one tortilla on the pan and press it down using a spatula. Keep pressing it down until air pockets start appearing on your tortilla.

Once this happens, flip the tortilla over and lower the temperature to medium. Keep pressing the tortilla down with the spatula until large spots of dark brown start to appear on your tortilla. When this happens, lower the temperature down to low. Then get a slice of ham and place it on top of the tortilla. Try to get the ham as close to the center of the tortilla as possible to make it easier to fold the tortilla later. Next sprinkle as much cheese as you desire on top of the ham. If you choose to use cheese slices instead, I highly recommend using only one slice. If you try using more than one slice, the cheese will quickly melt to the point that it can no longer be contained by the tortilla. Instead of eating quesadilla, you will end up scraping left over melted cheese from the pan.

Once these two ingredients have been added, get the spatula and fold the quesadilla in half so that it is in the shape of a half-moon. If you like that crunchy or somewhat burnt taste, flip the quesadilla over and over until you think it's ready. Once it's ready, you have a perfect, quick and easy to make study break snack, breakfast, lunch or dinner. Enjoy!