How I make them flawlessly and unfrustratingly...

Chimichanga are simply deep-fried burritos. What's in them must start out already cooked: frying a burrito will not cook raw ingredients, especially ones that aren't safe for consumption when raw.

You're not meant to follow these instructions exactly, but to learn to be successful using them. Put into the chimichanga whatever you want. Don't overfill the burrito or it will open on you and create a mess in the frying oil.

  1. Preheat a pot to about 350° with at least 3" of oil.
  2. Use the largest-size, raw flour tortillas you can buy. You can use the more common, precooked ones, but you'll have to fuss with them to get them soft enough (spritz with a little water before microwaving for longer than the 15 seconds I say here) and then take a lot of care when folding the chimichanga or you'll rupture them.
  3. Microwave the (raw, flour) tortilla about 15 seconds.
  4. Place a piece or two of canned, whole chili in the middle of the tortilla.
  5. Daub with refried beans and rice.
  6. Sprinkle grated cheese.
  7. Daub with your main filling like precooked chicken, pork, my cochinita pibil, or just more beans and rice, etc.
  8. Fold the left and right sides over the filling.
  9. Fold the bottom (flap closest to you) over the two side folds and the filling.
  10. Brush the inside of the top flap, the outside of the bottom flap and the side flaps with plain water.
  11. Seal the burrito by folding the top flap over it and press down a little on it. The flour tortilla should seal with itself. Stack using plastic wrap to keep it from gluing itself to other burritos you've already crafted.
  12. Fry two or three at a time, depending on the size of your pot, until nicely golden. You'll turn them over once part-way through.
  13. Remove from oil turn and shake to shed as much oil as possible. Place on paper towel to rest.
  14. Assemble individual plate with rice, beans and a chimichanga.
  15. Ladle sauce (enchilada, your own, etc.) over to "smother" and/or smother with grated cheese. Garnish with sour cream (or crema), avocado slices or guacamole. Add fine-sliced lettuce, pico de gallo, etc.