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Dish of the day: Quesadilla

Dish of the day: Quesadilla

The iconic quesadilla is a cheese-laden staple of Mexican cuisine, promising maximum flavour with every bite. When you opt for Mexican food, it's easy to overlook the humble quesadilla in favour of its flashier cousins – burritos and fajitas – but you don't have to look far to find an awesome selection of these mouth-watering, cheesy pockets – just look at Picoso Mexican, Cali-Mex and Taco Chaca.

The unsung hero

Quesadillas come to life when cheese is grilled between two layers of tortilla wrap, forming a versatile base for any topping combination you can imagine – meat, vegetables, herbs, spices – you name it, it'll work.

But the crucial ingredient is the cheese – melted to perfection to give you that satisfying bite every time. Traditionally,only creamy Oaxaca cheese is used, before ingredients like juicy mushrooms or slices of peppery chorizo are thrown into the mix. In America, the quesadilla has evolved into a type of a grilled cheese sandwich, with gloriously gooey Monterey Jack cheese used as a bed for shredded meat or crunchy peppers and onions.

Cultural fusion

The quesadilla was born following the Spanish invasion of Mexico in the 16th century, when dairy produce, spices and garlic entered the cooking pots of the nation. These ingredients came together with traditional Mexican foods such as beans, avocados, corn and tomatoes to make the quesadilla we know and love today.

You can also find your cheesy delights fried rather than grilled, and this sizzling version is known as quesadillas fritas. It's prepped like a pastry, adding a variety of spicy, creamy and tangy toppings as the tortilla is made, before folding them over and dropping them into sizzling oil until the outer casing is deliciously golden and crispy.

An abundance of options

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The love of the quesadilla runs deep here in Hong Kong too, with all sorts of places offering up this Mexican wonder. At Picoso Mexican, they keep things simple, opting for the American twist of smooth Monterey Jack cheese to complement piquant tomato salsa and sour cream. Over at Taco Chaca, they stick to tradition too, offering up a chicken-packed quesadilla perfect for a snack or desk-bound lunch.

More adventurous quesadillas can be found at Cali-Mex, where you can enjoy tender Angus steak, fiery chipotle pulled pork or melt-in-the-mouth chicken, all with lashings of ranchero sauce, pico de gallo and cheese to top it all off. Plenty of fresh, healthy vegetarian options are also available, or for something a bit different, try the Fisherman's Wharf Shrimp Quesadilla, with plump seafood and tasty sautéed vegetables bursting from a freshly baked tortilla.

Give the quesadilla the recognition it deserves: check out Deliveroo's fantastic selection of Mexican cuisine today.

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