One of America’s Favorites – Chimichanga

April 26, 2021 at 6:02 AM | Posted in One of America's Favorites | Leave a comment
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Chimichanga

A chimichanga is a deep-fried burrito that is common in Tex-Mex and other Southwestern U.S. cuisine. The dish is typically prepared by filling a flour tortilla with various ingredients, most commonly rice, cheese, beans, and a meat such as machaca (dried meat), carne adobada (marinated meat), carne seca (dried beef), or shredded chicken, and folding it into a rectangular package. It is then deep-fried, and can be accompanied by salsa, guacamole, sour cream, or carne asada.

The origin of the chimichanga is uncertain. By some accounts, it originated in Mexico, in others, by accident in Arizona, United States. Given the variant chivichanga, specifically employed in Mexico, one derivation indicated that immigrants to the United States brought the dish with them, mainly through Sonora into Arizona. The words chimi and changa come from two Mexican Spanish terms: chamuscado (past participle of the verb chamuscar), which means seared or singed, and changa, related to chinga (third-person present tense form of the vulgar verb chingar, a rude expression for the unexpected or a small insult.

One of America’s Favorites – Chimichanga

A chimichanga is a deep-fried burrito that is common in Tex-Mex and other Southwestern U.S. cuisine. The dish is typically prepared by filling a flour tortilla with various ingredients, most commonly rice, cheese, beans, and a meat such as machaca (dried meat), carne adobada (marinated meat), carne seca (dried beef), or shredded chicken, and folding it into a rectangular package. It is then deep-fried, and can be accompanied by salsa, guacamole, sour cream, or carne asada.

Chimichanga from Amigos in Melbourne, Australia.

The origin of the chimichanga is uncertain. By some accounts, it originated in Mexico, in others, by accident in Arizona, United States. Given the variant chivichanga, specifically employed in Mexico, one derivation indicated that immigrants to the United States brought the dish with them, mainly through Sonora into Arizona. The words chimi and changa come from two Mexican Spanish terms: chamuscado (past participle of the verb chamuscar), which means seared or singed, and changa, related to chinga (third-person present tense form of the vulgar verb chingar), a rude expression for the unexpected or a small insult.

According to one source, Monica Flin, the founder of the Tucson, Arizona, restaurant El Charro, accidentally dropped a burrito into the deep-fat fryer in 1922. She immediately began to utter a Spanish profanity beginning “chi…” (chingada), but quickly stopped herself and instead exclaimed chimichanga, a Spanish equivalent of “thingamajig”. Knowledge and appreciation of the dish spread slowly outward from the Tucson area, with popularity elsewhere accelerating in recent decades. Though the chimichanga is now found as part of the Tex-Mex cuisine, its roots within the U.S. are mainly in Tucson, Arizona.

Woody Johnson, founder of Macayo’s Mexican Kitchen, claimed he had invented the chimichanga in 1946 when he put some burritos into a deep fryer as an experiment at his original restaurant Woody’s El Nido, in Phoenix, Arizona. These “fried burritos” became so popular that by 1952, when Woody’s El Nido became Macayo’s, the chimichanga was one of the restaurant’s main menu items. Johnson opened Macayo’s in 1952. Although no official records indicate when the dish first appeared, retired University of Arizona folklorist Jim Griffith recalls seeing chimichangas at the Yaqui Old Pascua Village in Tucson in the mid-1950s.

According to data presented by the United States Department of Agriculture, a typical 183-gram (6.5-ounce) serving of a beef and cheese chimichanga contains 443 calories, 20 grams protein, 39 grams carbohydrates, 23 grams total fat, 11 grams saturated fat, 51 milligrams cholesterol, and 957 milligrams of sodium.

 

One of America’s Favorites – Chimichanga

August 14, 2017 at 5:05 AM | Posted in One of America's Favorites | Leave a comment
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A chimichanga with rice

Chimichanga (/tʃɪmiˈtʃæŋɡə/; Spanish: [tʃimiˈtʃaŋɡa]) is a deep-fried burrito that is popular in Tex-Mex, Southwestern U.S. cuisine, and also found in the Mexican states of Sinaloa and Sonora. The dish is typically prepared by filling a flour tortilla with a wide range of ingredients, most commonly rice, cheese, machaca (dried meat), carne adobada (marinated meat), carne seca, or shredded chicken, and folding it into a rectangular package. It is then deep-fried and can be accompanied with salsa, guacamole, sour cream, and/or cheese.

 

Debate over the origins of the chimichanga is ongoing:

The words chimi and changa come from two Mexican Spanish terms: chamuscado, (past participle of the verb chamuscar which means seared or singed, and changa, related to chinga, (third-person present tense form of the vulgar verb chingar, a rude expression for the unexpected or a small insult.

According to one source, the founder of the Tucson, Arizona, restaurant El Charro, Monica Flin, accidentally dropped a burrito into the deep-fat fryer in 1922. She immediately began to utter a Spanish profanity beginning “chi…” (chingada), but quickly stopped herself and instead exclaimed chimichanga, a Spanish equivalent of “thingamajig”.

Woody Johnson, founder of Macayo’s Mexican Kitchen, claims he invented the chimichanga in 1946 when he put some burritos into a deep fryer as an experiment at his original restaurant Woody’s El Nido. These “fried burritos” became so popular that by 1952, when Woody’s El Nido became Macayo’s, the chimichanga was one of the restaurant’s main menu items. Johnson opened Macayo’s in 1952.

Although no official records indicate when the dish first appeared, retired University of Arizona folklorist Jim

A chimichanga with refried beans and rice

Griffith recalls seeing chimichangas at the Yaqui Old Pascua Village in Tucson in the mid-1950s.

Given the variant chivichanga, mainly employed in Mexico, another derivation would have it that immigrants to the United States brought the dish with them, mainly through Nogales into Arizona. A third, and perhaps most likely possibility, is that the chimichanga, or chivichanga, has long been a part of local cuisine of the Pimería Alta of Arizona and Sonora, with its early range extending southward into Sinaloa. In Sinaloa, the chimichangas are small.

Knowledge and appreciation of the dish spread slowly outward from the Tucson area, with popularity elsewhere accelerating in recent decades. Though the chimichanga is now found as part of the Tex-Mex repertoire, its roots within the U.S. seem to be in Pima County, Arizona.

According to data presented by the United States Department of Agriculture, a typical 183-gram (6.5-ounce) serving of a beef and cheese chimichanga contains 443 calories, 20 grams protein, 39 grams carbohydrates, 23 grams total fat, 11 grams saturated fat, 51 milligrams cholesterol, and 957 milligrams of sodium.

 

 

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