By Carson Davis
Before my children were born, I saw long road trips as an excuse to enjoy fast food or discover local joints in small towns all over the South. Now, when my family drives over twelve hours to visit grandparents and extended family, we pack food. It’s a long trip, we drive through the night, and we don’t have time to find the perfect coffee shop when we’re contending with teething toddlers.
I’ve settled on quesadillas as my go-to travel food, along with fresh fruit, almonds, and a little bit of dark chocolate. Like sandwiches, you can make quesadillas ahead of time and stick them in the fridge. After some experimenting, I’ve found that vegetable quesadillas hold together better than raw veggie sandwiches. It’s nice to feel somewhat healthy on hour eleven of a twelve-hour drive.
To try these quesadillas for yourself, wash and peel some of your favorite vegetables. I like to use a food processor to shred them, but you could also use a grater. Saute vegetables in a skillet with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and (depending on your spice preference) cayenne, cumin, or curry powder. After a few minutes, try the vegetables. When cooked to taste, set them aside near the stove.
Then pour a little more olive oil into your hot skillet. Toss in a whole wheat flour tortilla and flip it over after a minute to warm the other side. Once warmed, add a handful of shredded vegetables, some shredded cheese of your choice, and perhaps some black beans or chicken. Fold over immediately, and cook each side until it’s golden brown. My most recent batch included carrots, black beans, and cheddar cheese and was a big hit.
At some point, years from now, we’ll enjoy leisurely stops once again. For now, I’ll keep looking for healthy car snacks to make summer road trips a little bit easier.