Brie and Grape Quesadillas. A fruit and cheese platter is a good party food, but game-distracted guests can fumble the elements -- they maul your cheese and drop grapes that roll under the couch. This is an inventive way that seals the meal and has them eating out of the palm of their hand.
This easy creation lets you spend more time with your company. If you're a pro-athlete looking for recipes simple enough for your mid-season or post-prison cookbook -- this one's for you. Rachel Ray called it "Even too easy for me".
Here's the game plan.
Seedless Grapes (a small bunch)
Flour Tortillas (1 pack)
Griddle pan or skillet
Heavy pot or toddler for weight
3-4 whole Quesadillas to be divided.
1. Have a beer.
Between the stress of football season and hosting duties, better pop a cold one. When it comes to drinking, think nurse not dog. Don't lap it up too fast or you just might be the nip-slip half-time show.
2. Grease, then heat up the griddle. Lube that surface up, then get it sizzling hot, like the slutty as-seen-on-TV cheerleaders you want to strangle.
While the griddle (or skillet) is still cold, put a little EVOO on a paper towel and wipe it across the surface. Then heat that to about 400 degrees. To see if it's ready, sprinkle on a few drops of water. If they dance around like a whore in church, it's hot enough.
3. Slice grapes and brie. If you have a maid named Beulah, feel free to yell out, Peel me a grape, Beulah. It worked for Mae West.
Cut the grapes in half. Slice the wonderfully creamy brie into 1/4 inch slices. Go ahead, nibble.
4. Assemble and move to griddle. Before you add your toppings, lift each tortilla and separate. They're like immigrants, they arrive in a pack and tend to stick together.
Cover one entire tortilla with a layer of what is arguably the world's most luscious cheese. Put plenty of grape halves on the cheese, between the cheese, all over the cheese. Imagine the grapes are a nerdy teenage boy and the cheese is a gang of popular girls and they get locked in a closet. Those grapes will be all over that cheese. The girls emerges a hot mess, and that's what everyone's after.
Move the burdened tortilla carefully to the heated surface. If any grapes get out of line, you're the coach, knock 'em back in! Cover with another tortilla and prep your next batch.
How's your beer?
Tip: Buy organic tortillas since conventional contain GMO corn that might be responsible for my memory loss. I forget.
5. Flip over and weigh down with a heavy pot. Lift up the bottom corner of the quesadilla and peek to see if the tortilla is browned. You want it to look bronzed -- neither too even like a spray tan nor as patchy as a trucker's arm.
When the desired color is achieved (about ten minutes), carefully flip the entire quesadilla over. Use a big spatula, size matters -- I know it's a euphemism for sex, but my sweet old granny used to tell me, You can't make butter with a toothpick.
Take a heavy pot or a brick wrapped in foil and weigh the thing down. Think of the weight as a teacher helping a college football player pass a test. This hefty advantage makes it cook faster and lets the cheese melt evenly and glue the tortillas closed -- a successful quesadilla has its stuff together!
Cook about 5-8 more minutes and remove to a cutting board.
6. Cut and serve. Remember the cheese is hot but your guests are hungry so slice it up quickly. Flour tortillas get crispy so they're easy to cut with a sharp knife.
A pizza cutter works well, too. Cut in half, then in half again to yield 4 slices. Keep cutting into smaller sections if you're feeding kids or adults that drop food on your floor.
Plate and serve. Offer a ramekin of your favorite hot sauce (mine's Sriracha) -- a touch of spice compliments the sweet cheese and fruit beautifully. Probably what a Shakira hipshake tastes like.
This unique and simply impressive recipe is a great kick-off to any game party and will work equally well at a birthday celebration, movie night, dinner for one with a box of chardonnay, or even at a romantic dinner for two.
You'll be a hit as a host. When the whistle blows, it might just signal the ultimate time-out: unnecessary roughness in the bedroom.