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No Ramen, No Problem: Breakfast Burritos

01/28/2014
Dave Gershgorn
Editor-in-Chief

It’s a new year and a new you. You’re a lean, mean, resolution-keeping ma­chine.

But even the best machines need to refuel from time to time.

Enter, breakfast burritos.

These breakfast burritos can be packed with a variety of healthy and filling ingredients to start your day off right without having to spend any time cooking. In no time, you can have a breakfast ready to go and even ready to travel. For the sake of convenience, I reheat mine from the freezer in the microwave.

The basics of the breakfast burrito are simple: eggs, cheese and a meat, wrapped in a flour tortilla . To add some variety and enhance our flavor profile, we’re going to add some extra ingredi­ents as well, like onions, red peppers, mushrooms and potatoes. For our meat, we’re going to use breakfast sausages.

Let’s start with the ingredients that take the longest to cook. Peel your potatoes and put them in a sauté pan with enough olive oil to just cover the bottom of the pan at a low-medium heat.

While they’re cooking, dice your on­ions and add them to the mix. Cover, and then slice your mushrooms, and cut your red peppers into short slivers.

Stir in your mushrooms to the potatoes and onions, and cook them together until your potatoes are soft and your onions have turned light brown.

Now, toss in the red peppers, and continue to stir every minute for three more minutes.

Remove your hash-like mixture from your pan, and put into a mixing bowl. Make sure you have room for more in­gredients.

Now we can cook the sausage. If your pan is still oiled from the previous ingre­dients, place the sausage in the pan on a medium heat, turning when they be­come browned on each side. Cook until there is no more pink inside the sausage.

Once they’re cooked through, move the sausages to the cutting board and slice into thin circles. Then add them to the mixing bowl.

Our last ingredient to cook is our egg component. This is arguably the most difficult ingredient in this recipe. Great chefs, from Gordon Ramsay to Wolfgang Puck, can tell the calibre of a chef in the way they prepare a simple scrambled egg.

Ramsay says, in a video detailing how to make the perfect scrambled egg, that when there’s a new chef in one of his kitchens, he tests them on how well they can make a scrambled egg.

“If they can make the perfect scram­bled egg, you know that they know how to cook properly,” the “Hell’s Kitchen” host says.

So, let’s move on to making an egg as light and fluffy as the perfect quiff of Gordon Ramsay’s hair.

First, crack your eggs and whip them until the yolk and white have combined into a smooth mixture. Set it aside, and we’ll focus on the tools you’ll need to prepare to cook your eggs.

The most important tool in your egg-making arsenal is a hot pan. This is a re­curring theme for cooking proteins like meat or eggs, and you’ll find that profes­sional chefs heat their pans as soon as they start any recipe with either ingredi­ent. You’ll also need a spatula to move the eggs around in the pan.

Once your pan is heated, we’ll add butter. If your butter sizzles and foams when added, you’re at the right tem­perature. Add roughly half a tablespoon.

Now, Food Network chef Alton Brown says that if your eggs take longer than 30 seconds, you’re doing some­thing wrong. He uses a metaphor as eggs being liquid meat – they have a high protein content and contain a lot of moisture.

So, we’re logically going to take many of the same steps as we do when cook­ing meat.

Pour your eggs into the pan, let them set for three seconds and then use your spatula to break up the forming curds in a circular fashion, as per Brown’s in­struction.

Do this, alternating moving the eggs and letting them set, for 30-40 seconds.

Proteins cook even after leaving the hot pan, so we’re going to put them on a room-temperature plate and let them rest for a minute or so. The eggs will fin­ish cooking, and be perfectly where you want them to be.

Based on the kind of pan you are using, you may need to vary your heat and amount of butter used, but you shouldn’t have to deviate too far from this formula. Once the eggs have set, add them to your mixing bowl.

To assemble your breakfast burritos, get your shredded cheese and flour torti­llas out. Then, place a heaping spoonful of your breakfast mixture in the middle of your tortilla, sprinkle a generous amount of shredded cheese on top, and roll the bottom of the tortilla over the mixture.

With your hand on the flipped up portion of the tortilla, pull it toward you to make sure it’s tightly wrapped, and then flip the sides in toward the mid­dle. Then, with the tortilla still tight, roll away from you until it’s completely wrapped.

The burrito still might try to unwrap itself, but place the flap of the tortilla under the burrito so it will stay wrapped under its own weight.

Then, simply repeat wrapping until you’re out of your mixture.

I froze my burritos in a large plastic container, but you can wrap them indi­vidually, or eat them all at once.

To spice up your mixture, add srira­cha, sliced tomatoes, olives or even spin­ach if you’re into that.

Just remember, when you’re sautéing, you want to let the denser ingredients cook longer, while adding leafy or thin ingredients like baby spinach in last.

Reheat in the microwave for rough­ly two minutes or in the oven for 30 minutes.

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