Saturday, September 29, 2012

Wanted Something Quick

        So I got home from work Friday, exhausted. The power went out a couple of times and as my day job relies heavily on computerized records, the power outages caused a major disruption to our workflow. So the end of my day was a rush to try and catch up. When I got home my wife rushed off to get some well deserved time away from our children and some groceries without the hassle of the kids. This left me in charge of dinner. I like to eat. I love good food. Therefore I cook. I even enjoy cooking. However, I wanted something quick but better than macaroni and cheese. So I turned to a favorite standby.
        Burritos. These can be easily made with leftovers and have always proved to be a hit with my family. Here's what I did.
  • about 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • about 1 teaspoon of minced garlic
  • 1 can of beef chunks (some leftover pot roast works great)
  • 1 can black beans drained (leftover beans also work great)
  • about 1/2 packet taco seasoning (sometimes I've got some left over)
  • some shredded cheese (always good to have on hand)
  • tortillas (also good to have on hand)
  • some diced tomato
  • some sour cream
  • some lettuce (I used some leftover salad)
        First, I sauteed the onion over medium heat in a skillet with extra virgin olive oil until just starting to turn clear. I prefer to use olive oil whenever possible as the fats are healthier and most importantly, I like the taste. Tip: add a small amount of vegetable, or other high smoke point oil, to low smoke point oils like extra virgin olive oil to raise its smoke point and prevent it from scorching. Next, in went the beef chunks, garlic and taco seasoning. After that had some time to sizzle a bit (about five minutes) I added the beans. After it had all gotten nice and hot (maybe another five minutes) it was time to put the burritos together.

        I like my burritos with lots of goodies. So lettuce, tomato, cheese and sour cream went in along with the beef and bean mixture. Rice, guacamole, salsa or hot sauce are also things I enjoy in my burritos. As always, what exactly goes into your burrito would be up to personal preference. In fact, most of these ingredients could be switched up. I could've used pinto beans, or pork. A can of green chili (or some fresh roasted, yum) would be great too. 

        I thought they turned out great and really hit the spot. My kids loved them, and my wife was a little jealous to see what we had while she was away.
         All in all, it only took about 20 minutes to put together. It was much better than mac and cheese or even just some re-fried beans smeared into a tortilla. A little imagination, even with leftovers, can go a long way towards making something great.