Sunday, March 23, 2014

Dairy-Free Cheesy Chicken Quesadillas


Rejoice oh ye who are lactose intolerant, I have found how to beat the non-dairy pit of despair!

For about the past 6 weeks or so now, I have been testing how I do on Cabot's non-lactose cheese.  I was first told of them thru a friend's post about it on Facebook, and naturally I was surprised that Cabot not only have certain cheeses that profess to be lactose free, but:
- have actual wholesome ingredients I recognize
- is gluten free
- can be found in most grocery stores
....and IS REAL CHEESE.

You heard me!  No soy or rice milk, non-melting plastic-y so-called cheese here, folks!

NOT ALL of their cheese selections are lactose and gluten free, so be sure to look for these on the packaging before buying:
 

They have about 10 different cheeses that are safe for us non-dairy folks that you can learn more about here.  Also of note to those of you able to have dairy with no problems, I'd recommend considering using Cabot for having non-chemical, non preservative-heavy cheeses.

(Pictured above is the specific cheese I've been using)
If you're hesitant to try it out because you are highly sensitive to dairy, you still have nothing to fear.  I am the most gut-sensitive person I know.  Just the smallest minute smidget of-a-hint of dairy can throw me for a loop for days.  I approached this cheese suspiciously and tried it first as a tiny fleck no bigger or thicker than my pinky nail, and waited.  A day passed and nothing happened; I felt fine.  A few days later I tried a bite-sized cube.  Still nothing.

You have to imagine how hard it was at this point to restrain myself from devouring the whole bar in cheese-induced ecstasy.

Each time I tried this cheese and increased how much I used, I was afraid of being let down like I sometimes am when I'm trying a new food, especially when I'm just beginning to feel safe using it.   But nada.

It's been 8 years since I stopped eating any dairy, and it's been heavenly to be back.  I've made mac & cheese with bacon, had CHEESEburgers, cheese on broccoli...oh my stars.

Naturally, my sights became set on having quesadilla-goodness back on the menu!


CHEESY CHICKEN QUESADILLAS:

You'll Need:
- Cabot cheese of your choice
- unskinned chicken thighs
- corn tortillas (or whatever you prefer)
- olive oil
- salt & pepper

Prep:
- heat your skillet on medium-high heat
- add the chicken thighs and sprinkle them with salt & pepper (and any other spices you'd like)
- while the chicken is cooking, shred the cheese (I do about 1/3 cup for each tortilla, but it will depend on the size of the tortilla shells you're using)
- after the chicken is cooked-through, cut the chicken (or shred) into small bite-sized pieces

To Start:
- heat your skillet on medium-high.
- when the pan is giving off heat, add approx 1/2 tbsp of oil to the pan and immediately place a tortilla in the skillet.  Swirl the tortilla gently around to catch the oil underneath most of the shell.
- quickly add the cut chicken and cheese
- place tortilla over the chicken and cheese
- flip when the first tortilla is a nice golden-brown.  your quesadilla is done when the 2nd shell is ready.
- repeat with each subsequent quesadilla

Enjoy your cheese feast!


these quesadillas went so fast I barely had time to snap some pix w/ my cel for this post - oops 

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Thursday, March 13, 2014

Coming Soon!

Hi all - it's been a crazy few weeks with sicknesses and storms and all sorts of fun stuff, but I'm back now and I'll be posting new entries again starting the beginning of next week!  I'll be continuing my mini-series on non-toxic alternatives to things we use everyday, including my recent hair color change using henna, as well as some ideas having to do with one of my favorite things: food.  Till then, happy March - spring is coming!

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