December 08, 2022

Diamond Dishes: Cool solution for quick and easy lunches

Life is complicated, right? So, let’s make one thing very uncomplicated. Why not put lunch on autopilot?

Here’s the plan: We’re going to make a bunch of delicious heat-and-eat burritos to stash in your freezer for a quick on-demand lunch, snack or dinner.

Compared with commercially frozen burritos, these taste better and are far healthier. Just look at the ingredients on frozen burrito packaging if you need further convincing.

You’ll find that these belly-filling burritos are easy, inexpensive and delicious, and you get to choose exactly what to put in them.

You’ll need burrito-size 10-inch flour tortillas for this purpose. They come in packages of eight, so that’s the quantity used for this recipe.

If we’re going to the effort of making burritos to freeze, might as well make a whole bunch, as this recipe easily multiplies.

The burrito rule of thumb is one generous cup filling for each 10-inch tortilla. If you’re making eight burritos, you’ll need eight cups filling.

One issue people have with making burritos at home is folding them so they don’t burst and make a mess. My tip: Don’t overfill them!

A 10-inch tortilla can handle no more than 1 1/2 cups filling, and using less makes folding even easier.

How to fold a burrito: Warm the tortillas for easier handling, either individually in the microwave for 10 seconds each, or heat the whole package in the oven by wrapping the tortillas in foil and heating for 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Spoon fillings onto each tortilla just below the center. First, fold in the sides that are perpendicular to the lines of ingredients. Pull the bottom edge over the top, squeezing the filling toward you as you roll the burrito away from you. Continue rolling, leaving the seam at the bottom.

How to freeze a burrito: Place burritos seam side down on individual pieces of foil. Wrap tightly in the same manner as you folded the tortillas. Use a permanent marker to date and label them. Place in a freezer-safe bag and freeze for up to three months.

How to heat a burrito: Take a burrito from the freezer, remove the foil and wrap in a damp paper towel. Place the wrapped burrito on a plate and microwave on high for 2 to 3 minutes, until heated through. You also can heat foil-wrapped burritos in the oven at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. That’s best for heating several at once.

Usually, when life is complicated, I’d suggest taking something off your plate. Instead, I’m suggesting putting something on your plate that’s delectably easy.

Buen provecho!

Beef And Bean Burritos

Servings: 8

Ingredients

2 pounds (85/15) hamburger

1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce

Taco seasoning, purchased or homemade, to taste

1 (16 ounce) bag frozen pepper and onion blend, defrosted

1 (15.5 ounce) can refried beans

2 cups cooked rice

1 cup shredded cheese

8 burrito size flour tortillas

Procedure

Preheat a large skillet to medium-high; cook the hamburger until no longer pink. Drain excess fat and add the tomato sauce and taco seasoning, stirring to combine. Add the defrosted pepper and onions, squeezing most of the liquid out before adding, and cook thoroughly. Let cool.

Meanwhile, gather the rest of the ingredients and warm your tortillas. It’s unnecessary to heat any of the other ingredients because we’re freezing these. Evenly divide ingredients between the tortillas, and fold and freeze as directed above. The easiest way is to assembly-line the process, with extra hands if possible.

Patti Diamond

Patti Diamond

Lifestyle expert Patti Diamond is the penny-pinching, party-planning, recipe developer and content creator of “Divas On A Dime — Where Frugal Meets Fabulous!” at www.divasonadime.com. © 2022 King Features Synd., Inc.