Cold-Weather Tex-Mex Pocket Food

Wild Game BurritoCold-Weather Tex-Mex Pocket Food

You’ll have to forgive me for breaking one of my hard and fast rules. It’s based on science. But somehow breaking it works darn well for this one recipe. So here it is: overload the pan with meat. But do turn the meat up to a genuine medium high before you start. Here goes.

Yummy Wild Game Burrito Recipe

Serves 6


  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 pound ground, or chopped venison
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground smoked serrano chili pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground oregano
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, with liquid
  • 1 large ripe tomato, diced
  • Fresh or bottled salsa to taste
  • 2 cups grated Jalapeno Jack, Monterey Jack or Mexican cheese blend (your choice)
  • 6 flour tortillas, about 10” diameter


  1. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat, and when it begins to smoke–just barely begin to smoke–toss the meat into the pan. Spread it around, then pour the finely diced onion and garlic cloves over the meat and gently press the layers together with a spatula. Sprinkle with the cumin, serrano chili and oregano, then let it cook, without turning, peeking or touching it at all for 6-8 minutes.
  2. The bottom of the meat should be deeply browned. Now break up the meat with the spatula, and stir the ingredients around another 3-4 minutes so the onion softens. Add the diced tomato and beans, with the sauce, and stir them in. (Not rinsing the beans gives the burrito filling a moister, creamier texture.)
  3. Let that mixture cook until the liquid is almost gone. In the meantime, place the tortillas on a clean damp dish towel in the microwave. Don’t nuke them, however, until the juices in the pan are just about dry.
  4. Filling ready? Nuke the tortillas for about 10 seconds, then arrange them 2 at a time on a cutting board and assemble the burritos. Half the cheese goes down the center of each tortilla, then 1/6 of the meat and bean mixture over that, and more cheese to top it off. If the filling is set East to West, gently fold over those two ends, then roll the south side over the top of the filling, tucking the end under the filling and continue rolling the burrito toward the north. Assemble the rest of the burritos, warming them again if needed. The warmth of nuking them, gently, will make them  more flexible to roll.
  5. Ready to eat? Place each burrito, 1 or 2 at a time in a lightly oiled skillet, seam side down, and lightly brown each side, 1-3 minutes each side. To serve, spoon fresh salsa and more cheese on top.
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