November Healthy Cooking Class Recipe: Three Sisters Quesadillas

This month we are celebrating complementary relationships. “Complement” refers to the quantity, number, or assortment required to make something complete or perfect. The Ohlone Indians had an intuitive sense of this when they grew the Three Sisters crops together: corn, squash, and beans. Corn stalks grow tall and sturdy and complement the beans by providing a pole that the beans use to climb on and grow.  The beans complement the corn by fertilizing the corn roots with nitrogen. Squash grows close to the topsoil in the ground and complements both the corn and the beans by providing mulch that maintains the overall health of the soil. Nutritionally, the Three Sisters complement each other by gifting you with carbohydrates, fiber, protein, and plenty of phytonutrients (colorful cancer-protective compounds in plants). Our seasonal and real-food recipe also brings together complementary cooking techniques and flavors from around the globe—quesadillas are beloved lunches in Mexico, the egg-on-top technique is popular throughout Asia and especially in Korea and India, and of course the fillings are from American Native Peoples. What a reward that our complementary relationships with each other can be so scrumptious!