Monday, March 15, 2010

Laughing Planet Style Burritos

I went to college at Indiana University of Bloomington. During my years in Bloomington I discovered one of the best burrito restaurants I ever ate. I don't think I even ate burritos before this time. Everything was organic and freshly made to order. The restaurant is called the Laughing Planet Cafe. I would eat there at least twice a week. What I loved about the burrito was that it had brown rice rather than spanish rice inside. I don't like spanish rice in my burritos. When I graduated from IU, I was very sad to leave Laughing Planet burritos behind, but luckily I got to go back for homecoming the following year!
When I did come back the year after graduating I told my friends that I was going to find a way to bring some burritos back to NYC. There was no way that I would leave Bloomington without a burrito or 2 or 10! I actually did bring back 10 burritos. I carried them in a lunch box and even got stopped at airport security with them. They asked me to see what was inside and I have to say I was pretty embarrassed. One of my friends does have a picture of this day, however, I need to get it scanned to my computer. (If any of you have it, please send it my way!)
So the burritos and I got back to NYC safely and from that day on for lunch or dinner I ate one of the burritos. They were delicious still! Last year I had the chance to go back to Bloomington once more for my friend's bachelorette party and of course we had a meal at Laughing Planet. I got the black bean and spinach burrito! Ohhhhh did I miss it!
There just isn't a place in NYC that is like Laughing Planet, at least none that I have found. I like to be able to hold my burritos without my hands getting dirty, like brown rice and fresh ingredients in them too! I used to like Burritoville that was the closest I ever got but then the one on the upper east side closed down! If you know of any good burritos in NYC please leave me a comment. Until then I will be eating my own version, that comes pretty darn close to Laughing Planet. The calorie count for my burrito was a total of about 515 calories and 22 grams of protein! That's a great lunch or dinner option! Here's my version...
The Ingredients: 1/2 cup brown rice, 1/4 cup mexican cheese blend, 1/4 of an avocado, 1 wheat wrap, sauteed spinach with Pam Spray, 1/2 cup black beans, and salsa (as much as you like)
All the ingredients for the filling was already warm when placed in the wrap (spinach, beans, and rice). The burrito after I folded it like a fool. The problem was that my wrap was to small and my fillings were too much for the wrap I used. It didn't really matter though because I was careful when I flipped it in the pan, so nothing came out. See photo. The key is to keep it together in the pan to get crunchy, if you can succeed doing that then you will be golden!
After both sides were crunchy and the filling was warmed through I wrapped the whole burrito with aluminum foil. I tried to get it nice and tight in the foil so that it wouldn't fall apart as I ate it.
I have to say that usually I'd want a side of guacamole to eat it with, but putting the avocado inside the burrito saved me a step and actually tasted wonderful! I liked how it got all warm and mushy, avocado in each bite!


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