Though the origin of this beloved deep-fried burrito is hotly debated, historians generally concede that the chimichanga was born in Tucson, Arizona sometime between the 1920's and 1950's, influenced by neighboring across-the-border Mexican state, Sonora. Whether it was a burrito accidentally dropped in the fryer, or the product of intentional Tex-Mex reinvention, the chimichanga is as fun to eat as it is to pronounce - so grab your napkins (or bibs). We like cutting them open and serving with salsa and guacamole in the middle.
Recipe courtesy of Santos Loo
Pork Chimichanga
Total:
1 hr 50 min
Active:
35 min
Yield:
6 servings
Level:
Intermediate
Total:
1 hr 50 min
Active:
35 min
Yield:
6 servings
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil, plus more for deep-frying
  • 2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, cut into rough 1-inch chunks
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
  • 6 cloves garlic, smashed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • One 12-ounce bottle pilsner beer, such as Corona
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • 8 ounces tomatillos, husks removed, rinsed and quartered (about 3 medium)
  • 1 small red onion, quartered (about 8 ounces)
  • 1/2 bunch fresh cilantro with tenders stems (1 cup packed)
  • 3 canned chipotles in adobo sauce
  • 1/4 cup whole raw almonds
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded yellow Cheddar
  • Six 12-inch flour tortillas
  • Guacamole, pico de gallo and sour cream, for serving

Directions

Special equipment: Toothpicks

Heat 1/4 cup of the oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the pork, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, garlic and some salt and pepper, and cook until the pork is brown, about 15 minutes, turning as needed. Pour in 8 ounces of the beer and the vinegar, scraping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pot. Cover and braise over medium-low heat until the pork is fork tender and the liquid just covers the bottom of the pot, about 45 minutes. Remove the pork, keeping the remaining braising juices in the pot. Let cool and shred. Add the pork back into the pot and set aside.

In a blender, combine the tomatillos, onion, cilantro, chipotles, almonds and remaining 4 ounces beer. Puree until smooth. Season with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. 

Heat the remaining 1/4 cup oil in a straight-sided saucepan over medium heat and add the green sauce. It will spit as it cooks. Cook until reduced by half, about 15 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent the bottom from burning. 

Preheat 4 inches oil in a heavy-bottomed pot to 375 degrees F. 

Combine the green sauce with the shredded pork. Put 1/4 cup of the cheese in the center of each tortilla. Top with 3/4 cup of the pork and spread evenly, leaving a 3-inch border around the tortilla. Roll into burritos by folding the bottom half of the tortilla over the pork and cheese filling, and then folding the two sides in. Continue rolling the pork and cheese over the top layer of the tortilla. Secure with toothpicks. Fry in the oil until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve with your favorite guacamole, pico de gallo and sour cream.

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