Bring on the Chimichanga
Whatever restaurant we go to, my wife always, yes, always orders the chimichanga. For those of you reading and do not know what a chimichanga is, it is first and foremost a thing of beauty, and secondly it is a deep fried burrito that is wrapped and folded as to not allow the grease to enter the burrito. These chimichanga’s can be filled with whatever you like, however they are traditionally filled with beans, cheese, and shredded meat, and accompanied with guacamole, salads, rice, or a simple sauce.
I have been making the “chimi” since I found out the second time my wife and I ate at a restaurant that served mexican style food, that she ordered the chimi. It was my time to figure out how to make them, and make them better, creating my own restaurant inside my own kitchen.
I’m going to be honest with you, I have mastered the chimichanga, and they are worth every minute of making. In years past, I have filled my chimi’s with cooked, shredded chicken, cheese, and refried beans, however this past Sunday, I took the day to make carnitas (slow cooked pork shoulder, shredded, then cooked to a bit of crisp for twenty minutes in the oven (trust me, carnitas is where it is at)).
- Large flour tortillas
- Canola or vegetable oil for cooking, approximately 48 oz.
- Cooked and shredded meat (chicken, pork, beef; recommended carnitas)
- Shredded cheese to your liking (I use a marble blend)
- Large can of cooked, refried beans
Heat your deep fryer, or large, and deep enough pot to hold the oil, leaving plenty of room at the top. While the oil is heating on medium-to-high heat for nearly 10-15 minutes, begin getting all of your items together. This is a bit of an assembly process. Have your bowl of cooked beans, cheese, and meat ready.
I heat my large tortillas individually in a microwave oven for nearly 20 seconds. You do not want to over heat the tortillas, but you want them to be flexible. Have you been to Qdoba or Chipolte and watched them wrap your burrito? It is kind of like that, but not so big, and we will deep fry them. 🙂
Lay out your tortilla, and with a flat spoon, lightly lay on the beans, keeping in mind that this is the glue to seal the chimi. Then near the lower half, add your meat and cheese. Fold over the bottom, towards the middle, then take the sides and wrap them in. This is the tricky part, as you want to get the folds to seal tightly as you will not want the grease to not only unseal your masterpiece, but to get inside. Rumor has it you can use toothpicks to seal it as well, but hey, who needs toothpicks?
Continue this process in order to fulfill your chimi graving. I believe I wrapped nearly ten of them, frying all of them. For the ones you want to freeze, let them completely cool, then you can either use your foodsaver device, or wrap in foil, then in a ziplock bag. When you are ready to reheat, simply take them out, and cook in a preheated oven of 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes.
The oil should be ready, so carefully place them in the oil and cook until golden brown. Place them in a paper towel lined strainer to soak up any of the remaining oil.
Trust me folks, this is a must make. It might be trial and error the first time around, however once you got it down, seriously, you will be in food heaven.