From America's Test Kitchen Season 6: Tex-Mex Favorites
An authentic quesadilla is meant to be a quick snack, not an overstuffed tortilla with complicated fillings. We wanted a simple toasted tortilla, crisp and hot, filled with just the right amount of cheese.
We kept the tortillas crisp by lightly toasting them in a dry skillet. We then filled them with cheese and pickled jalapeños, lightly coated the tortillas with oil, and returned them to the skillet until they were well browned and the cheese was fully melted. Not yet satisfied that our recipe was speedy enough, we made the process even more convenient by switching to small 8-inch tortillas and folding them in half around the filling. This allowed us to cook two at one time in the same skillet, and the fold also kept our generous cheese filling from oozing out.
Makes 2 folded 8-inch Quesadillas
Use a light hand when seasoning with kosher salt, as the cheese itself is rather salty. Cooling the quesadillas before cutting and serving is important; straight from the skillet, the cheese is molten and will ooze out. We advise against using sharp or aged cheddar cheese in this recipe, as both tend to separate and turn greasy. Serve the quesadillas with salsa, guacamole, or sour cream. Finished quesadillas can be held on a baking sheet in a 200-degree oven for up to 20 minutes.