My Florida Friend doesn’t cook much. Just enough to have calories and some flavor. Me? I’m more a foodie than that, so when I’m visiting I like to ‘get creative’ and make interesting tasty meals.
Last night I made “Italian Burritos”. Here’s how I did it (and yes, they were a success ;-)
In a medium / large frying pan, put about a tsp of olive oil, add one medium / large onion (or two small ones) chopped. Start a sauté on medium heat. About 6? minutes into the sizzling part (or however long it takes to chop them up ;-) add about a pound of Mild Italian Sausages minced (or chopped as you like it… I made bits about olive sized ’cause it Like things chunky ;-)
Simmer and sauté all that until it is cooked through (turn bits over to assure everything gets some pan time and about 3 minutes on a side gives nice browning stuff). When it’s looking cooked, add about 1/2 to 1/3 of a small jar of Pace Picante Sauce ( I’d guess about 4 ounces… just to the ‘has sauce’ stage but not to the point of sloppy wet and dripping…) and “sprinkle over” with Comino (Cumin) and Garlic Powder.
How much? Depends on what you like. I do about as much as the salt I’d put on such a pan of meat, or about an even sprinkle enough to see the dusting of cumin as an even layer, but not thick. Too much cumin becomes bitter, too little it tastes very Italian and not very Mexican. Sprinkle a little, stir, and taste. If it isn’t Mexican enough, add more ;-)
In a second frying pan, put a 15 ounce can of Rosarita Original Refried Beans. Mash flat with a spatula and start it to frying on a medium heat (reduce to low once simmering some – you will need to turn spatula fulls of it over ever 3 or 5 minutes until that point to keep tabs on it as the bottom gets hot while the top shows nothing…)
In a third large frying pan, have it ready to take a tortilla to warm. I’ve also just stuck them, one at a time, on the oven rack at 350 for a couple of minutes…
OK, final check: Taste the meat mix, add salt if needed. I added a light sprinkle to bring up the flavors. It ought to be a nice cooked sauce with the onions clear and reducing into the sauce, and that sauce ought to be a thick paste, not runny.
Have a tortilla sized rolling plate or wooden cutting board. Put a tortilla in the hot tortilla sized pan, let it sit a minute, then flip. Feel free to touch the topside, and the ‘flip’ is done by grabbing an edge with fingertips / fingernails.. (truly authentic would be to do this over a gas flame or fire… but this is fine) Once hot (be careful not to burn, but if it gets brown spots, well, that’s tasty too but the rolling will be harder with a stiff tortilla…) put it on the plate and put the next tortilla in the pan.
With a spatula, put about 3 tbs (as you like it) of beans on the center of the tortilla in a stripe down the middle, leaving an empty inch or two at each end for rolling. Add a similar amount of meat mix. Step to the cold station: Add 2 olives (squashed and broken into halves or bits). I like black ones. Then sprinkle about as much Mexican Cheese Shreds on as you have beans or meat (again, as you like it – but it takes more than you first think). Sprinkle on hot sauce to your personal taste – folks who don’t like hot will be fine with zero…
Take the side near you and pull it over the ‘lump’. Press the edge to the tortilla on the other side, and pull back toward you, forming the lump into a squashed roll. Fold the ends (sides) in to make a seal at the ends, then proceed to roll away from you.
That’s it, now go do the next one. If you do it right, about 1/2 way though the process you flip the other tortilla and at the end of the roll, the next one is ready to load ;-)
I used Publix Market house brand Mild Italian Sausage. About a pound. (Five large ones about like a medium Polish Dog) You can use just about any brand with the same effect, or other meats for other effects. I’ve even used Turkey Kielbasa… but then it isn’t an Italian Burrito ;-)
Oh, and any made in excess of what is needed for the night can be put in a plastic tub in the freezer and frozen. Just microwave a couple of minutes (in two stages…) to defrost and warm when hungry…