Burritos! Casa Cordova Style


Burritos…  These are one of my favorite all-time dishes.  The thing to remember when you’re making this recipe is that it’s just a starting point, a suggestion, because Burritos are actually a fairly personal kind of “sandwich”.

For instance, I like the Chipotle style burritos, I’d rather not have all that rice in there. As I’ve stated many times before, I’m kind of a protein person, and I think the tortilla provides plenty of carbs.  So, what I’m actually saying here is stuff these things how you’d like.

Also, the meat portion of this recipe, minus the beans, is what I call the “Casa Cordova Spicy Meat Filling”.  It can be used in both burritos and tacos (and lots of other things, probably — stay tuned).

And just one more little thing before we get started, we did something a little different this time, we grilled them.   Oh yeah, we went there.  Throwing all caution to the wind, we put those little bundles of joy right on the grill! Normally, we fry them up at the end in a little butter in a non-stick pan, and that works great, but it’s summer-time, so light that grill!

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Use These…
  • 12 “Burrito Size” (10 inch) Tortillas  (more, if you’re going to add rice)
  • 2 Lbs ground meat.  I use meatloaf mix (ground beef, ground pork, ground veal), but you can use chicken and turkey if you’d rather
  • 1 Lb Chorizo sausage
  • 2 extra thick slices smoked bacon, or about a half inch slice off a slab
  • 1/4 cup Casa Cordova Spicy Meat Seasoning
  • 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1/2 pint roasted chiles. I smoke my own, but Hatch has been in this business for a million years and their chiles are amazing.
  • 8 oz Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Once again, I smoke my own, but these are awesome
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 8 oz cheese (I use Pepper Jack, but the grated mexican mix is good too, and easier)
  • 64 oz refried beans.  I use Ortega, Old El Paso, or Goya

Sane Optional Add-ins

  • Cooked rice
  • Chopped sweet peppers

Insane Optional Add-ins

  • 1/2 cup diced Serrano peppers
  • 1/4 tsp ground Ghost chiles

 

Do This…
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Chop all the bits that need to be chopped. The bacon should be sized somewhere between 1/4 and 1/2 inch cubes. Take the skin off the chorizo and loosely chop it (you’ll have to break it up into smaller chunks as you cook it).

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Now it’s time to cook the bacon.  Add the bacon to a cold stock pot with a thick bottom, then cook on medium high until it just starts to get a little crispy.  Set the bacon aside, but leave all that good bacon juice in the pot.

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Reduce the heat to medium and add the onion. Sauté on medium heat until they start to get a bit translucent, then add the garlic and continue to sauté until fragrant.

If you’re going to be adding chopped fresh sweet peppers, now’s the time to do that and sauté until they get tender.

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Add in the roasted chiles and continue to cook for a couple minutes, then add the Chipotles and cook for at least 5 minutes more.  If you’re going for the insanity of adding more hot peppers or (shudder) ghost pepper powder, you should do that now.

At this point you should have something brown in the pot that smells like Tex-Mex heaven. Set this aside.

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Now it’s time to cook the meats.  Sorry for not having pix of this, but it’s pretty easy, and the next pic sorta shows what it looks like when they’re all done.

Prepare your ground meat by adding  in the Casa Cordova Spicy Meat Seasoning then add a Tbsp of unsalted butter to the pot and throw the spiced meat mix in to brown.  Once it’s browned, set it aside and throw the chorizo in to brown.  You’ll probably have to work it a bit as it cooks to get nice small chunks.

When the chorizo’s done add the ground meat and bacon back into the pot.

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Add the onion\chile mixture to the meat and mix well.

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Add the refried beans and mix well.  Cook on medium, stirring continuously, until the beans loosen up and mix is nice and hot.

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Now it’s time to form the burritos. This takes a bit of practice, but once you know hoe to do it, it becomes second nature,

  1. Scoop some of the filling into the middle of the tortilla.  Believe it or not, this is the toughest part, just getting the right amount of filling on it.  It should look like the first pic above.
  2. Add the cheese and any other garnish you like to the top of the filling.
  3. Fold both the left and right edges over the mix.
  4. Fold the bottom up and over the mix while holding the left and right edges in place.
  5. Fold the upper “corners” over while holding the bottom in place.
  6. Roll the bottom over the top to finish.

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Once you’re all done, you should have a nice pile of Tex-Mex goodness ready to be crisped up. Don’t be worried if you have a little left over in the pot after you’ve formed the last one.  You can always put this on the side for some additional spicy meaty goodness when you plate.

For my money, the burritos aren’t really done until you give them a nice crispy crunch.  Normally we do this by lightly frying them on high in a non-stick pan with just a bit of clarified butter or olive oil to help them brown, but like I said above, we decided to grill them this time.

Get the grill nice and hot.  Close the lid to make sure the grates are hot enough to quickly leave grill marks, then open it up and leave it open for the rest of cook.

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Melt 3 Tbsp unsalted butter then brush the bottom of each burrito with the butter before placing them on the grill.

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When they’re all on the grill, brush the tops with butter.

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Let them cook for a couple of minutes or until they start to brown and acquire some nice grill marks.  Use your spatula to peak at the bottom of the burritos to know when they’re ready, then flip them over.

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When they’re all done, they should have a nice crispy texture with beautiful brown grill marks.  Try not to let them burn, because no one likes charred tortillas.

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As you can see from this photo, we had a little left over meat mix that I just plopped down next to the burrito, cuz I like it.

Some people will top this with salsa, and more cheese, and that’s perfectly fine. In fact I do that most of the time myself.  Sometimes, though, the plain burrito is good enough all by itself.

So, now you’ve made 12 burritos, but only 3 of them were actually eaten.  What to do with the rest?

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One of the greatest things about Burrito Night at Casa Cordova is that now I’ve got extra burritos for lunches anytime I want.

Place those awesome lunch time beauties on baking racks to cool.

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Once they’ve cooled down to a reasonable temp (somewhere around 70 degrees), vacuum pack them or seal them in freezer ready zip-locks, then stick them in the freezer and you’ve got your very own home-made ready-to-eat burritos for whenever you want. Reheat these the same way you would those nasty things they sell at convenience stores (microwave on high for 2 minutes) and enjoy a home-cooked lunch whenever you like.

Burritos! Casa Cordova Style

Use These…
  • 12 “Burrito Size” (10 inch) Tortillas  (more, if you’re going to add rice)
  • 2 Lbs ground meat.  I use meatloaf mix (ground beef, ground pork, ground veal), but you can use chicken and turkey if you’d rather
  • 1 Lb Chorizo sausage
  • 2 extra thick slices smoked bacon, or about a half inch slice off a slab
  • 1/4 cup Casa Cordova Spicy Meat Seasoning
  • 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1/2 pint roasted chiles. I smoke my own, but Hatch has been in this business for a million years and their chiles are amazing.
  • 8 oz Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Once again, I smoke my own, but these are awesome
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 8 oz cheese (I use Pepper Jack, but the grated mexican mix is good too, and easier)
  • 64 oz refried beans.  I use Ortega, Old El Paso, or Goya
IMG_20160617_212621-01
Do This…
  1. Chop all the bits that need to be chopped. The bacon should be sized somewhere between 1/4 and 1/2 inch cubes. Take the skin off the chorizo and loosely chop it (you’ll have to break it up into smaller chunks as you cook it).
  2. Add the bacon to a cold stock pot with a thick bottom, then cook on medium high until it just starts to get a little crispy. Set the bacon aside, but leave all that good bacon juice in the pot.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium and add the onion. Sauté on medium heat until they start to get a bit translucent, then add the garlic and continue to sauté until fragrant. If you’re going to be adding chopped fresh sweet peppers, now’s the time to do that and sauté until they get tender.
  4. Add in the roasted chiles and continue to cook for a couple minutes, then add the Chipotles and cook for at least 5 minutes more. If you’re going for the insanity of adding more hot peppers or (shudder) ghost pepper powder, you should do that now.
  5. At this point you should have something brown in the pot that smells like Tex-Mex heaven. Set this aside.
  6. Prepare your ground meat by adding in the Casa Cordova Spicy Meat Seasoning.
  7. Add a Tbsp of unsalted butter to the pot and throw the spiced meat mix in to brown. Once it’s browned, set it aside.
  8. Throw the chorizo in the pot to brown. You’ll probably have to work it a bit as it cooks to get nice small chunks.
  9. Add the ground meat and bacon back into the pot.
  10. Add the onion\chile mixture to the meat and mix well.
  11. Add the refried beans and mix well. Cook on medium, stirring continuously, until the beans loosen up and the mix is nice and hot.
  12. Form the burritos.
    1. Scoop some of the filling into the middle of the tortilla. Believe it or not, this is the toughest part, just getting the right amount of filling on it. It should look like the first pic above.
    2. Add the cheese and any other garnish you like to the top of the filling.
    3. Fold both the left and right edges over the mix.
    4. Fold the bottom up and over the mix while holding the left and right edges in place.
    5. Fold the upper “corners” over while holding the bottom in place.
    6. Roll the bottom over the top to finish.
  13. Crisp up the tortillas.
    Stove-Top method:
    1. Melt a Tbsp of clarified butter in a non-stick pan
    2. Lightly fry the burritos on high on both sides until they get crispy and light brown.
    If you’re doing this on the grill (yum!):
    1. Get the grill nice and hot. Close the lid to make sure the grates are hot enough to quickly leave grill marks, then open it up and leave it open for the rest of cook.
    2. Melt 3 Tbsp unsalted butter while you’re waitin for the grill to heat up.
    3. Brush the bottom of each burrito with the butter before placing them on the grill.
    4. When they’re all on the grill, brush the tops with butter.
    5. Let them cook for a couple of minutes or until they start to brown and acquire some nice grill marks. Use your spatula to peak at the bottom of the burritos to know when they’re ready, then flip them over.
  14. When they’re all done, they should have a nice crispy texture with beautiful brown grill marks. Try not to let them burn, because no one likes charred tortillas.
  15. Top with Salsa and more cheese if you like. You can even add a dolop of sour cream or guac. Whatever floats your boat.

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