Torta de Chilaquiles – Another Crazy Sandwich

Continuing with one-of-a-kind Mexican sandwiches (tortas), in addition to the guacamayas from a recent post (stuffed with pork rinds), there are tortas with enchiladas inside (called guajolotes), or the infamous “double T” – Torta de Tamal (yes, a bun stuffed with two tamales, a popular street breakfast in Mexico City).  Around the turn of the century (and Millennium), a creative entrepreneur at the corner of Alfonso Reyes and Tamaulipas streets, in Mexico City’s neighbourhood of La Condesa, decided to give tortas yet another twist, using chilaquiles (tortilla chips smothered in a Mexican sauce) as filling.  Over the years, she added extra ingredients, such as breaded chicken cutlets.  Her business has grown, and now she even has apprentices, still at the same corner, with no branches, but many other stands and restaurants are appearing all around the city, offering tortas de chilaquiles.

There is not much of a recipe; it starts with a batch of red or green chilaquiles (click here for recipe) topped with onions, cream, and fresh cheese, and a generous portion of breaded chicken cutlet, which, along with  a crusty bun, could be served as a plated meal:

Then, to make it portable, simply open the bun on one side, stuff everything else inside, and there it is, a robust Torta de Chilaquiles:

Full Disclosure:  Personally, I do not think I could recommend this sandwich with a clear conscience; there is an overload of calories, carbs, and fat, and very few vegetables (only onions and salsa).   I was cagey and ate only about half of this torta, and my tummy was still upset!  The flavour was nice, but honestly, not more than the sum of the parts, and it really is messy to eat, so the advantage of portability is not that great in the end. 

However, I thought it would still be worthwhile sharing the story as a curiosity and, who knows? Maybe it is just me, since hundreds of insouciant Mexico City dwellers enjoy these tortas de chilaquiles every day, sometimes waiting in line for over an hour to get their meal.

Funny Fact:  In pre-pandemic times, in 2019, there I was, in Mexico City, right at the corner of Alfonso Reyes and Tamaulipas streets, not at the torta de chilaquiles stand, but diagonal to it, enjoying a cold treat at “Nieves Roxy”, an ice cream parlour I knew from my youth.  I noticed a big crowd across the street, but I did not think of finding out what it was at the time (tortas de chilaquiles were invented after I had moved to Canada, so the stand was not familiar to me.)  While preparing this post, it suddenly clicked what that big crowd was about (as I said, hundreds of people enjoy these tortas every day!) and went back to my photos to see if I had by any chance captured the torta stand.  I found the photo below, taken from inside the ice cream parlour, showing the spot with a big crowd, in the background (LOL):

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