Thursday, March 3, 2011

Menu for 03/02/2011 - Shredded Beef Burritos with Roasted Red Peppers (Dude1)

We have good friends who have spent the last few nights in the hospital due to their ill infant.  I am happy to report it looks like the baby will be released soon.  We assumed our friends were getting pretty sick of hospital cafeteria and foodcourt food, so last night we wanted to bring them a good, home cooked dinner.  Since we were taking the food to the hospital it had to be easy to transport and easy to eat.  Therefore, this menu had "burritos" written all over it.  I went with shredded grassfed beef, roasted red peppers, and a hint of "breakfast".  It was good! Keep reading to see how I did it.

Shredded Beef Burritos with Roasted Red Peppers (and a hint of "breakfast")

Serves 4 - 6 depending how big you like your burritos

  • 2 organic red bell peppers
  • 4 organic red potatoes
  • 3 Tbl bacon grease from a pastured pig (or your fat of preference)
  • 2 lbs of grassfed chuck roast
  • 2 Tbl pastured butter
  • 1 organic white onion
  • 1 Tbl sea salt
  • 1 Tbl fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 Tbl cumin
  • juice from half a lime
  • 1 jalapeno diced (I omitted this because of the nursing mother)
  • 10 sprigs worth of organic cilantro
  • 2 organic tomatoes diced
  • 3 whipped eggs from a pastured chicken
  • Tortillas
  • Queso fresco
  • 2 organic avocados
8 hours before dinner, place the roast in a crock pot.  Cover with water halfway up the side of the roast.  Cook on medium heat (or cook on high for 5 hrs as I had to).  Some may wish to flavor the meat more at this point or to first sear it golden brown.  I was in a time crunch to get this started during my lunch break from work and also figured the meat would get flavored enough when tossing it in with the onion, peppers, and spices.   Flip the roast in the crock pot 2 -3 times while cooking.

While the roast is getting started in the crock pot, prepare you red peppers.  I have a toaster oven that works great for this.  I don't have to waste the energy with my big oven on just two peppers.  Set the oven to broil at 450 degrees.  Roast the peppers for approximately 5 minutes on each side.  You are looking for the skin to become very blistered and browned.  Try not to be conservative with this step because if the peppers don't roast long enough they will be hard to peel.

When the peppers are done roasting, take them out and let them cool for about two minutes.  Then place them in a sealable freezer bag.  They should still be good and hot and this will effectively continue to cook them a bit in their own steam.  This steaming step is critical for making the peeling of the peppers easier.  You can leave them in the bag like this for hours while the roast is cooking. 

Some 8 hours later, remove the roast from the crock pot and let it cool.  It should be super tender and easy to shred with a fork.  Remove your peppers from the bag and peel all of the skin off, remove the stems, and rinse out the seeds.  Cut the peppers into thin strips.

Dice the red potatoes into small cubes.  While you are doing this, melt the bacon fat in a pan on medium heat.  This is going to add some of the "breakfast" flavor I was talking about.  Add your potatoes and fry, remembering to flip them occasionally. 

While the potatoes are cooking, slice the onion into thin rings.  Melt the butter in a large pan, big enough to hold everything. Throw in the onions and lightly brown them.  Then add your shredded beef, peppers, tomatoes, lime juice, cilantro, and spices.  Toss frequently on medium low heat for 10 minutes or so to blend the flavors. 

The second "breakfast" item to add to the dish at this point is scrambled egg.  In my opinion I actually killed the presentation of my dish by adding the whipped eggs directly to the meat medley.  The egg just sort of coated everything and made it look gooey. Since there was not real chucks of egg, I also did not notice the flavor as well.  When I do this dish again I will cook the egg separately before adding it to the meat medley. 

Queso Fresco is a creamy, mild, and unaged cheese from Mexico (originally Spain, I believe).  This is one of the easier cheeses to make, but because we wanted to get over to the hospital to visit our friends I just bought it this time.  I definitely want to try and make this with my raw milk sometime in the near future.  Slice the cheese to be placed on the burritos.  Also dice up the avocado. 

Again, for the sake of time, I did not make my own tortillas.  To see how you might do this check out Dude2's post here.  For my tortillas, I stopped off at a local authentic Mexican restaurant.  I figured at least this way, they are freshly made and have no preservatives in them.

Given more time, I would have also liked to have made a homemade tomatillo salsa to go with this.  I will try this in the near future and post the results when I do.



  1. Oh my! That looks sooooo delicious!

  2. @Heidi: Thanks Heidi. If you happen to try these, let me know how it goes.