In the Kitchen: Brie and Pear Quesadillas

My good college friends Sun and Jan came up from LA a little while ago, and my local friend Jas and I eagerly made plans for their stay. We ended up spending a glorious Saturday getting our eyebrows threaded (whereupon I grudgingly admitted the truth: they DO do a better job than my own plucking), window-shopping and enjoying each other's company over a couple of delicious meals.

One of the girls had gotten a recommendation to try The Peasant and the Pear in Danville, so, eyebrows smarting, we headed over for a late lunch. We found it to be a cozy, cute restaurant downtown with a more upscale ambiance than not. From our varied choices of artisan burgers, sandwiches and personal thin-crust pizzas, all of us agreed that the food was top notch. One of the best things we tried was the appetizer: a brie cheese and pear quesadilla with a sweet-and-spicy chutney. I'd never thought of the combination before, but the results were so good, I knew I had to attempt to recreate it at home.
A quick trip to Costco for a bunch of pears and a large-ish wheel of brie and I was good to go... especially when a Google search turned up what appears to be the exact recipe from the restaurant! (Since it's part of another site, I won't repost the recipe here, but check out the link in the last sentence and print it out!)
I found a small round measuring spoon works as well as a melon baller for neatly removing pear seeds: a fact I'll certainly remember for later...

Cheerful chutney ingredients on the chopping board. Though the photo in the recipe shows a light, chunky chutney, I tried to replicate the restaurant's smoother, darker condiment.

Chutney on the way with some brown sugar to cut through the clean zing of fresh-squeezed lemon juice, which I substituted for the white wine called for in the recipe.
Lots of delicious pears and the brie cheese.

Flour tortillas from Trader Joe's -- more organic in both taste and shape.

Tortilla, pear, brie, and mozzarella stacked on a baking sheet.
Sweet deliciousness!


BruinChiq said...

oh my goodness! I'm salivating at the idea of a quesadilla with my favorite cheese and fruit combo! :) this is going on the recipe list ASAP

Jessica said...

Hi Vir! This is totally random, but your first paragraph totally reminds me of when we were in high school and I told you about threading and you proceeded to look it up online and try to thread my entire leg. OMG that hurt...

virginia said...

Haha Jessi.. you know I totally thought of that when we went. I might have even fondly mentioned it. I forget. Hahaha!