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Probe: June 12, 2002

June 12, 2002

HIGH AS THE MOUNTAIN — I can tell the Antelope Valley woman how to make special quesadillas so high and light they will float off her plate.

Start with a package of raw tortillas. You can get them at Albertsons, Vons or Costco. Spread grated Monterey Jack cheese (buy the pre-grated cheese) on half the tortilla. Now fold the unspread half over the cheese covered half.

Dip your finger in water and moisten the tortilla edges, then crimp the edges with a fork, mashing them until they seal.

Drop the quesadilla into a skillet with oil heated to 300 degrees. I use olive oil but you can use peanut, corn or any good cooking oil.


As the quesadilla fries, spoon hot oil over the top as if you were frying an egg sunny-side up. That will make little bubbles in the top crust, raise the inside temperature and make your quesadilla puff up like a basketball!

In addition to the cheese, you can add chicken or beef to the filling. Aye, aye, Mamacita! — Cookin' Fool, Seeley

Are you sure 300 degrees is hot enough? You didn't say if you turn your special quesadilla. If spooning hot oil over the top doesn't cook the top to a golden brown, we would turn it over.

But thank you for giving us tips to make a labor intensive dish into a modern recipe easy enough for a cook who works all day.

Your use of olive oil makes it almost a health food.

QUESTION: Are locally owned restaurants required to provide nutrition information for the food they prepare in their kitchens? I know national chains and their franchise owners must.

After reading an article in the newspaper about fat and calories in restaurant portions, I became concerned. I have some local favorites that I would like to know more about the contents of their food. I would appreciate any help you can give me. — Consumer, Holtville

There is no law saying restaurants owned by national chains must provide nutritional information. Some fast food giants provide information to counter claims that their food will kill you.

Food sold in grocery stores must be labeled with nutritional information. So far that requirement has not reached restaurants.

What you are seeing is a push to require nutritional information on restaurant menus.

Restaurant owners say it would be impossible to accurately calculate the calories or fat in a scoop of mashed potatoes prepared in a small cafe.

They say that would require standardized recipes and portion control servings. The burden would put "mom and pop" eateries out of business.

QUESTION: I have been considering enrolling in a seminar to learn self-hypnosis to lose weight and quit smoking. Do you know anyone who did this and did it work for them? — Fat Smoker, No Address

Over the years we've talked to people who told us they quit smoking after undergoing hypnosis. We even went under but we didn't get the stop smoking message.

Instead, the hypnotist told us we couldn't lift our arm. We didn't lift the arm but we could have lifted it. We just didn't want to.

But, OK, PROBE readers, have you tried self-hypnosis and did it work? Call us on our PROBE line at 337-3448.

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