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Tortas Ahogadas Los Primos is a lonchera in SanTana specializing in its namesake dish. A torta ahogada ("drowned torta") seems harmless enough. It's just a French roll on a plate, humbly dressed with your choice of meat inside and cold onion slices on top. But then the chef ladles on a fierce salsa that tints the bread blood red, so much lava-like salsa that it puddles around the torta; it looks like a burger at a homicide scene. You use fingers instead of fork and knife to tear off torta chunks and dunk them in the salsa pool, as you would a French dip sandwich into au jus. There's no acclimatizing here: each torta ahogada bite seems spicier than the last until your face is shiny with sweat and you're doubled over with heartburn even as you relish the thought of eating this little piece of hell—if hell were curiously sweet—again for tomorrow's lunch.
Jalisco is the Texas of Mexico. Everything's bigger, better or badder in Jalisco, from its sports teams to its cuisine. The best-known export from the capital of Guadalajara is the torta ahogada, a crusty birote roll stuffed full of carnitas and drowned (ahogada) in sauce. At Tortas Ahogadas Los Primos, a lonchera (emblazoned with the requisite picture of the Chivas, Guadalajara's pro soccer team) parked in a bleak, industrial stretch of Santa Ana's Fifth Street, the bread is deliberately... More »
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