Burritos are filled with deliciousness and are arguably one of the most popular Tex-Mex dishes in the United States. The burrito can be considered a foodgasmic staple, having the possibility of being enjoyed with lots of veggies, beans, rice, meats, sauces, cheeses and so much more! But how did the burrito come to be? More importantly, why did it come to be? Time travel with us to the past and uncover the history of burritos!
The word burrito literally translates to little donkey. Isn’t that weird?
As the story goes, a gentleman named Jaun Mendez sold tacos in the streets of Ciudad Juárez during the Mexican Revolution, some time between 1910 and 1920.
To keep the food warm he would wrap it in a flour tortilla and ride around on a donkey. from his home to the stand. Jaun and others discovered that food tastes better this way, and perhaps the best way to serve a meal made of meat, rice and sauce. The ‘food of the donkey’ became famous.
That’s not all. Another story follows a street vendor in Ciudad Juárez during the 1940s. Allegedly, he would wrap fillings in tortillas for school students. We must admit this vendor sounds a little mean, because he referred to them as dimwitted or burrito, implying that the students were dumb.
If we try to trace back the history of burritos in the US, we can point to some time between the 1940s and 1960s. when migrant workers who had brought the concept with them were served burritos for lunch because of the convenience of making them. Americans soon fell in love with the burrito and adapted it into their staple diet. Mexicans might have been more particular about this food, varying slightly with every region, always trying to have an element of authenticity – smaller and thinner burritos with only one of two fillings – but Americans did not care much for this; all that mattered for them was the taste. Ultimately, the Mexican delicacy evolved into the giant burrito we know today. This extra large burrito, which contains numerous fillings along with rice and sour cream, is claimed to have been invented by a San Francisco grocery store. If you don’t recognise it yet, think ‘San Francisco burrito ‘ or ‘Mission Style burrito ‘. Does that ring a bell?
After having reached the US, we can see an enormous variety of Burritos. They are now made with Thai chicken or Chinese pork; there are breakfast burritos, and a burrito style for every occasion. Next time you go to your favorite Mexican place, you’re going to find many lovers of this dish. But how many can say they know its history?
Loved knowing about the history of burritos? You’ll be riveted by the history of potato chips.