There’s nothing like a vacation to bring out new flavors and tastes into your life.  As friends and family have been joining us on Magician Lake in Michigan this summer, meals are a special time filled with laughter and good food.  {Here’s a photo of one of my favorites sights; the sun poking through the clouds after a storm over the lake}.

This month’s Recipe Redux theme: A Vacation-Inspired Recipe. Start unpacking your favorite vacation memories. Think about a trip you took state-side or internationally and create a healthy recipe from an unforgettable meal you enjoyed. Or, create a recipe from a native ingredient you saw or tasted on your travels.

I am inspired to get creative in the kitchen with tomatoes and peppers (jalapeños, poblanos and green bells) as our friends - the Krakoras, brought us a bounty from their amazing garden.

We enjoy making veggie quesadillas when we’re at the lake.  We can fill them with all sorts of colorful produce, plus everyone - adults and kids, love them!  Here’s a lakeside version inspired by veggies of the season.  Feel free to use corn or whole grain tortillas to get more fiber, as well as nutritional value.  The beauty of quesadillas are you can add whatever veggies or toppings you want.


For these quesadillas I am going crazy with peppers, since I have so many varieties on hand.  Be sure you cut the seeds and membrane away, if you want less heat.  (And avoid touching your eyes - as they will tear and burn, if you do.)  However, I love to heat as the capsaicin,  which is the chemical property in hot peppers that may help rev up metabolism slightly — not enough to cause weight loss, however. [I wish it did!]

Serves 2 


4 6-inch corn or whole grain tortillas

1 cup part-skim mozzarella, grated

1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

2 cloves garlic, sliced

1 large Bell pepper, green, red or yellow, sliced

1 jalapeno, sliced

1 poblano pepper, sliced

1 Roma tomato, sliced thinly


Lay 2 tortillas on the platter and top with 1/2 cup of cheese each.  Set aside.

On the stove top over medium heat add olive oil to skillet.  Heat for 30-seconds and then add garlic and peppers. Sauté until the peppers begin to soften and brown.  Add tomato and heat for a few minutes.  Remove veggies from stovetop and place in bowl.

In the same hot skillet over medium heat, place a tortilla with cheese and top of 1/2 of the cooked veggies.  Top with the other plain tortilla and cover.  Heat until cheese melts. Flip over to brown the other side.  In 2 - 3 minutes remove from heat and place on a cutting board.  Repeat with the other tortillas.  Cut them in halves or quarters when done.

Serve immediately with a side salad and a glass of sparkling water with a squeeze of fresh lime.

Enjoy eating simply,


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