Chicken Quesadillas at Taco Milagro

More often than not I find inspiration for dinner while watching movies. This has led to some unorthodox evening meals, including blueberry pie with cheese (Taxi Driver) and diner eggs and potatoes with Pinot Noir (Sideways).

Most recently I was viewing clips of Napoleon Dynamite on YouTube, specifically the scene in which Napoleon's slattern of a grandma commands, "Make yourself a dang quesadilla!"

So, I called Taco Milagro and asked for a chicken quesadilla to go, placing special emphasis on the mispronunciation ("dil-LA"). Oh, I amuse myself!

I never know quite what to expect with quesadillas in terms of size and complexity. On some occasions, I've received a "full" serving (re: complete double circle) but between the tortillas is nothing more than a thin layer of melted cheese and a few woeful pieces of meat. Other times, the quesadilla is loaded with different cheeses, vegetables, and thick strips of chicken or beef, and comes with sides of sour cream and guacamole. But in those cases, you usually only get a few pieces, never the full circle.

Price and menu description can be misleading, and rather than pepper the poor server with questions and esoteric commentary (see preceding paragraph), I just take my chances.

Taco Milagro vends what I like to call a partial-pie, fully loaded quesadilla. Each slice contained a thick strata of melted American and Jack cheeses, tender chicken, and grilled peppers. The depth and girth of the individual wedges were greater than the total number, but that was just fine, especially considering each hefty slice required many satisfying, hearty bites. Tortillas were appropriately toasted, not soggy, with just a hit of brown crisp around the edges. Packaged piping-hot, my quesadilla maintained its oozy melted state through the car ride home and three-quarters into my meal. Certainly better than Napoleon's gramma might make.

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Joanna O'Leary