Quesadilla de Flor de Calabaza Recipe

Homemade corn tortillas stuffed with crunchy chicharrones, squash blossoms, and melty cheese, then dipped in two fresh salsas for the ultimate elevated quesadilla recipe.
Photo by Farideh Sadeghin

Makes 12 quesadillas 
Prep time: 30 minutes 
Total time: 1 hour


for the salsa de chile morita:
4 tablespoons|60 ml vegetable oil
1 ¼ pounds|567 grams tomatoes, roughly chopped
½ ounce|17 grams chipotle morita
1 small garlic clove, roughly chopped
¼ large yellow onion, roughly chopped
1 ½ teaspoons Mexican oregano (can substitute with half the amount of Italian oregano)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt, to taste


for the salsa de chile serrano:
1 pound|454 grams tomatillos, husks removed and washed
6 serrano peppers
kosher salt, to taste

for the Masienda tortillas:
1 ⅓ cups|170 grams chef grade blue masa flour
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt

for the quesadillas:

8 ounces|240 grams shredded quesillo (can sub a nice melting cheese like Monterey Jack or Chihuahua)24 leaves epazote
12 squash blossoms, torn by hand
1 cup|40 grams crushed chicharrones 
1 ½ cups|355 ml melted manteca or cooking oil


  1. Make the salsa de chile morita: Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a medium skillet over medium-high. Add the tomatoes and cook until charred, about 10 minutes. 
  2. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a medium skillet over medium-high. Fry the morita chiles until they puff and brown to a dark chocolate color, 4 minutes. Add the onion and garlic and cook until the onions are translucent and aromatic, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the chile-onion-garlic mixture to the tomato pan and sweat for approximately 15 minutes, then transfer the mixture to a blender with the oregano and salt. Deglaze the skillet with 2 tablespoons of water and scrape up any bits from the bottom of the skillet. Transfer to the blender and, with the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil and blend until emulsified. Season with salt and set aside. Makes 1 ¼ cups|270 grams. 
  3. Make the salsa de chile serrano: Heat a comal or cast-iron skillet over high. Add the tomatillos and serranos. Do not move the ingredients for approximately 5 minutes to allow them to char. Once charred, flip the tomatillos and serranos and char the other side an additional 5 minutes. Once everything is charred and tender, transfer them to a blender and purée until smooth. Season with salt and set aside. Makes 1 ¾ cups|420 grams.
  4. Make the tortillas: Heat 1 ⅓ cups|315 ml water in a small saucepan and over low heat until a thermometer reaches 115°F.
  5. In a medium bowl, slowly add the warm water to the masa. Stir by hand to evenly incorporate the flour. Knead the masa until the water is evenly incorporated and no dry powdery spots remain. Add the salt to taste evenly incorporated into the masa. You want a masa that is moist to touch, but not tacky. Portion the masa into twelve (1 ¼ ounce|40 gram) balls. Cover with a damp cloth. 
  6. Working with one ball at a time, press the masa flat in a tortilla press lined with plastic. Place the pressed masa on a hot comal (cast iron pan or nonstick pans work) over medium-high. After about 1 minute, the edges of the tortilla will begin to change color and lift from the pan. When this happens, flip the tortilla over. Cook 1 minute longer, then flip the tortilla back over. When the tortilla puffs, it is ready. As you cook the tortillas, transfer them to a clean towel to keep warm.
  7. Make the quesadillas: Heat a medium skillet over medium-high. Add one tortilla and cook for 30 seconds, then flip. Add the chicharrones, epazote, torn petals of squash blossom, and cheese. Cook for 1 minute, then fold the tortilla over and baste the top with 1 tablespoon manteca. Flip the quesadilla to the other side and baste the second side with more manteca. Cook for another minute to melt the cheese and heat the quesadilla through. The exterior of the tortilla should have lightly toasted parts. Remove the quesadilla from the heat and serve with the salsas.

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