¡Olé! I managed to create a dish using my leftover pinto beans that transformed them into something completely new and unrecognizable. ¡Cool!
Actually, warm. For dinner last night, at 7:30 following my last voice student of the day, we had pinto bean & ham burritos that were quick, easy, and delicious — and warming. During a break earlier in the day, I started dinner preparations by grinding homegrown whole wheat into flour, then forming it into tortillas, which I cooked on a heated cast-iron griddle, singing traditional Mexican canzones de tortilla all the while. Or maybe I just opened a package from Whole Foods — I really can't remember the details after such a busy day.
I wanted to add some cheese to make a nice melty layer inside the tortillas, so I grated the only hard cheese I had on hand, which was a drunken goat, which luckily has a pungent flavor strong enough to stand up to the smoky ham.
I also wanted something to provide a crunch — I prefer a burrito that's not monotonously gooey throughout — so I made up a little cole slaw with the last few remaining red cabbage leaves in the fridge. I chopped these and added to them a small grated carrot, a little fresh thyme, a grated garlic clove, and a little salt and pepper. This little bit of salad rolled up with the triple proteins of bean, ham, and cheese may not exactly have fulfilled our vegetable quotient for the day, but it did supply the needed textural contrast — and some delightfully bright colors!
An additional bright color and a hefty kick in the ass came from this hot hot hot sauce left over from our last Vietnamese take-out. Peter usually finds sauces like this too spicy for his delicate palate, and I will likely regret adding it, though the negative effects will not arrive until later (please do not ask for further clarification), but I am a masochist when it comes to hot condiments, so on my burrito it went. [Post-dinner update: Surprisingly, Peter availed himself of hot sauce too.]
This fresh and pleasantly bitter organic ale helped to extinguish the fire in our mouths.
Here's the assembled burrito before rolling up:
I was excited to have created this dish, which was unlike anything I've ever cooked before. The slow-cooker is having the culinary-envelope-expanding effect I'd hoped for!
There's a bit more of the non-frozen pinto beans left in the fridge, which we're going to have for lunch tomorrow prepared in the manner preferred by the father of one of my readers: over cornbread with diced raw onion. We'll probably toss on some cilantro as well (tomorrow's vegetable quotient).