The torta ahogada (ah-oh-GAH-dah): The sandwich so wonderfully messy that you need to eat it with a spoon.
A hard Italian-type roll called birote salado is first stuffed with your choice of meat. At Tortas Ahoghadas Aquí Es, your choices include carnitas (pork leg or butt), buche (pork stomach) or lengua (beef tongue). Unless you’re an adventurous eater, it’s a safe bet that as a gringo you’ll probably stick with the carnitas. But consider the buttery-soft beef tongue if you’re up for trying something new
A soupy salsa made from tomato, chile de árbol, and spices is then poured over the sandwich until it’s drowned in a centimeter of liquid. Ahogar means “to drown” in Spanish. This is not a sandwich you pick up and eat with your hands.
The birote’s thick, crunchy exterior fends off the salsa (and your spoon) for a few minutes before everything softens up and turns into a gooey explosion of bread, meat, and spices. It’s a bit like cracking into a crab. Keep at it and you’ll be rewarded with rich mouthfuls of flavor at the end.
Top everything off with squeezed lime, some thin-sliced pickled purple onion, and a few drops of spicy salsa to complete this dish which originated here in Jalisco and is especially popular in nearby Guadalajara.
Last updated October 11, 2020
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