Cafe Rio Salad...with a twist

One thing I'm dying without is Cafe Rio. None of that amazing fresh-mex up here in the wintry north.

Making them yourself is a daunting task - making the rice, beans, meat, dressing, guac, tortilla strips...because you have to have EVERY PART to make it the real deal.

Another reason I don't like to make them is that only Ry and I eat them (Mady hasn't learned the joys of lettuce yet) which means TONS of food leftover.

Solution? Hint: it has to do with my new quest to simplify and stock my freezer!

I used all the leftovers in an assembly-line to put together some amazing burritos which I stuck in the freezer for quick lunches. A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! Ryan ate one today and about passed out from the goodness.

So lets start with the recipes:

Shredded Sweet Pork
3 lb pork roast
1 c brown sugar
1 c Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp powdered ginger
1 tsp salt
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
2 Tb dried minced onions

Cook all ingredients in a crock pot on low all day (abt 8 hours). One hour before serving, remove roast and shred it. Dump out all cooking juices and place shredded pork back into crockpot and add...

1 c brown sugar
1 c red enchilada sauce

Cilantro Lime Rice
3 c water (or a little bit more...whatever ratio you use for cooking your rice)
3 c rice
4 cubes chicken bouillon
4 tsp garlic, minced
1 Tb canola oil
2 Tb fresh lime juice
1/2 bunch of cilantro
1/2 onion
1 can green chilies

Blend cilantro, onion, and chilies in food processor. Bring water to boil and add all ingredients, simmer covered for 30 minutes or until rice is cooked.

Garlic Black Beans
1 can black beans
1/3 c tomato juice
2 cloves garlic, minced (1 tsp)
1 tsp cumin
2 Tb canola oil
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tb chopped cilantro

Heat oil then add cumin and garlic until garlic begins to pop. Add rest of ingredients and serve warm.

Creamy Tomatillo Dressing
3 tomatillos, peeled and quartered
juice of 1/2 lime
1/2 c buttermilk
1/2 c mayonnaise
1/2 c sour cream
1 pkg dry buttermilk ranch dressing
1 c fresh chopped cilantro
6 green onions with ends, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced (1 tsp)
3 tsp sugar
1 jalapeno, sliced thin - add to taste

Place all ingredients in food processor or blender and mix well. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.

Tortilla Strips
*Cut corn tortillas into thin strips using a pizza cutter. Spray with cooking oil ( like Pam), sprinkle with kosher salt and bake in 350 oven until lightly brown and crisp.

Now you know how to put the salads together, so I will just assist in the freezer burrito part.

Step 1: Set up an assembly line with rice, beans, pork, tortillas, cheese, leftover dressing, and salsa (if you want).

Step 2: Center a tortilla on parchment or wax paper. Fill with desired ingredients.

Step 3: Fold the bottom and sides of the tortilla towards the center as tightly as possible. Fold the paper around the burrito as tightly as possible

Step 4: Pack burritos in a freezer ziploc bag.

To eat, microwave for 1 minute on each side or you can cook it in the oven at 375 for about 20-25 minutes.

Glad to help you with those leftovers.

{Recipes for the salad are from The Sisters Cafe}

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