Spicy black bean quesadilla, inspired by Brixton

Motivated not by a trip to Mexico (although I have been) but by night out in London, I decided to make spicy black bean quesadillas!

I went to Cancun last year on business, but there really wasn’t much time for anything other than slides, slides and more slides (of the PowerPoint variety that is; I don’t work at a water park). I did manage to have a dip in the Caribbean sea at 6:30 am before work and go to the craziest nightclub in the world (Coco Bongo – wow), but food-wise there was no time to sample the street cuisine and Cancun hotel buffets were the dish of the day.

On a recent Halloween night out at Hootananny, Brixton, on the other hand, I had a black bean quesadilla from the Mexican Kitchen – delicious food served in their beer garden until closing time at 3 am (Hootananny boast “the largest choice of Gourmet fillings for Tacos and Bouritos in London) – and I decide to have a go at making my own.

While writing this post I have built up an appetite for another one.


(Makes enough for 4 people as a snack, or 2 people as a meal)

400 g can of black beans, drained and rinsed

½ tsp ground cumin

½ tsp oregano

2 tsp dried chilli flakes (0r more or less, depending on how hot you want it)

2 spring onions, sliced

Red pepper, chopped into 1 cm bits

100 g cheddar cheese, grated

Salt and black pepper

4 flour tortillas

1 garlic clove

vegetable oil

Handful coriander leaves

1 ripe avacado

1 tbsp lime juice

1 lime for garnish


  1. Mix the beans, cumin, oregano, chilli flakes, spring onions, red pepper, grated cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Mush up the beans a bit.
  2. Score the sides of a clove of garlic, and rub over one side of each of the tortillas.
  3. Spread the bean mix over 2 of the tortillas, right to the edges. Place the other two on top (garlic side down) and press down with a spatula so they are quite flat.
  4. Put some vegetable oil in a pan. Fry the quesadillas one at a time, for 3-4 minutes on each side.
  5. Meanwhile, mix the avocado, coriander and lime juice, and add a little salt to taste. ( I think I like this simple avocado dip more than I like guacamole – seriously!)
  6. Cut the quesadillas into quarters, and serve with the avocado/coriander/lime mix and a slice of lime to garnish.
This recipe is adapted from a recipe on one of my favourite websites, BBC Food.
Pop-up office

The best place ever to set up office?!

Shame there was no time to enjoy it!


Filed under Mexico, Recipes, tried and tasted

3 Responses to Spicy black bean quesadilla, inspired by Brixton

  1. Looks delicious! I heard from an Italian I met in Chile that Hootenanny is closing down. Is this true? Not sure I can trust the source!!

    • BeccaHills

      There has definitely been some chat around making it closer earlier than 3 because of complaints from residents, but not sure of the outcome. Better not shut!!! Will investigate further and update you on that. Where will be do live band karaoke without it?!?!

      • BeccaHills

        Definitely still open at the moment Ari! Was there last week munching in quesadillas, burritos and tacos (yes, all three!!)

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