Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The First of the Elimination Recipes-- Burritos!

I love burritos and other such foods. As a vegetarian, they tend to pack a lot of punch when they are loaded with a variety of beans, quinoa and delicious veggies. This recipe does have a lot of variations (of course-- you know me!) so please check out the notes at the bottom for ways you can jazz up or change up this recipe.

This recipe makes six nice sized burritos--- I divided it in half and put one half in N's skillet with diced chicken breast (about a pound) and the other half went into my skillet. If you don't know how to wrap a burrito, I consider it very similar to swaddling a baby. If you don't know how to swaddle a baby, then I suggest you marry a man like N who used to make burritos for his job in high school. He is the champion baby swaddler and burrito wrapper!

Baby-to-Be Burritos
6 large dairy free soy free tortillas (or free of whatever you need)
1/2 can of black beans (or other safe bean)
1 cup sliced peppers
1/2 cup mixed veggies (I chose carrots, red peppers and broccoli)
1 cup dry quinoa (cooked before added to skillet)
3 small tomatoes, diced OR 1/2 can of diced seasoned tomatoes
1 tsp chili pepper flakes
1 tsp of cumin
1 lb of meat of choice (I didn't use this but N liked it with chicken)
1 Tbsp safe oil (per skillet)
1/2 tsp salt (per skillet)
1/4 tsp ground black peppercorn (per skillet)
1 bag of shredded safe cheese (Daiya is top 8 free and rice free)
1 cube of Rapunzel Vegan Bouillon with Sea Salt and Herbs  (or make your own!)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. If doing two separate meals, divide ingredients in half and prepare two skillets. If not, use a large skillet or wok for preparing this meal.

Measure out one cup of dry quinoa and two cups of water into a saucepan. Bring to a boil and then cover and reduce heat until all liquid is absorbed (usually takes around 10 minutes or so). Set aside.

Heat skillet(s) on medium heat. Add oil to each. Add in beans and quinoa (and meat if desired). Stir often with large wooden spoon. or other large utensil. Cook for about five minutes and then add in veggies except for tomatoes. Cook for another five minutes and then add in seasonings (you can always omit seasonings or add in different ones for variety) including bouillon cube (no extra water needed, just add as is and keep stirring). Continue to stir with wooden spoon regularly. Cook until meat is prepared to your liking and to appropriate safety standards. For those going meat-free, cook for 5-10 minutes after adding seasonings, once all seasonings are worked in to the mixture. If there is extra liquid in the mixture, you can continue cooking until the excess is absorbed.

Remove skillet from heat (don't forget your burners! haha) and set aside. Begin preparing your burritos! Have a large glass/metal baking dish ready. (You can line it with parchment paper if you wish!) On each tortilla, place desired amount of filling and then top the filling with cheese (if using cheese/cheese alternative). Roll burrito-style (For burrito rolling help). As you roll each burrito, place it in the pan seam down until they are all neatly lined up. Once the pan is full, warm in the 350 degree oven for about 5-8 minutes, essentially until the tortilla "seals" itself and the cheese melts. If you need to leave them in the oven for a bit longer (due to dealing with toddler woes), cover with foil and turn off the heat after 5 minutes.

And as promised, some suggestions for alterations!

1. For the filling .  . .  you can use rice, amaranth, millet or any other grain/pseudo grain that cooks up similarly to quinoa. For those of you on elim diets, quinoa and amaranth pack a bit more punch that the others. Be sure to check out Ancient Harvest Brand quinoa and Bob's Red Mill Amaranth.

2. You can use fish as your meat of choice-- just be sure to monitor the heat and cooking for safety!

3. If it is safe, sliced avocado would add a great protein boost, or you could make your own guacamole to add to the filling.

4. Other seasonings to consider.  . . cilantro. Need I say more?!

5. Other ways to use the filling other than burritos: filling for stuffed peppers, layer in a casserole dish with safe tortilla chips (may I suggest Green Mountain Gringo? You can also make your own if you are super industrious-- more on that later), serving by itself or baked in a casserole with added cheese or alterna-cheese.

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