Torta Ahogada (Drowned Sandwich)

Torta Ahogada (Drowned Sandwich)
Photo: Jason Donnelly
Start To Finish Time:
15 mins


  • 1 recipe Chunky Guacamole or 2 cups purchased guacamole

  • 6 bolillo or other crusty sandwich rolls, split lengthwise but not halved and lightly toasted

  • 1 recipe Refried Beans

  • ½ recipe Carnitas or 3 cups shredded cooked chicken

  • 1 recipe Red Chile Sauce or 3 cups purchased enchilada sauce, heated

  • ½ cup crumbled queso fresco (2 ounces)

  • Sliced pickled jalapeño chile peppers (optional)


  • 3 pound boneless pork shoulder

  • 2 tablespoon lard or vegetable oil

  • cup chopped onion (1 small)

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 cup water

  • 1 teaspoon finely shredded orange peel

  • cup orange juice

  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano or regular oregano, crushed

  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper

  • 2 bay leaves

Refried Beans

  • 8 ounce dried pinto beans (about 1-1/4 cups)

  • 8 cup water

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • 2 tablespoon bacon drippings or olive oil

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

Red Chile Sauce

  • 5 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth

  • 1 onion, quartered

  • 3 cloves garlic

  • 12 dried New Mexico chile peppers (about 3 ounces total), stemmed, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces*

  • 2 corn tortillas, torn into pieces

  • salt

  • bottled hot pepper sauce

Chunky Guacamole

  • cup finely chopped seeded roma tomatoes (2 medium)

  • ¼ cup sliced green onoins (2)

  • 2 tablespoon lime juice

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 1 cloves garlic, minced

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • teaspoon ground black pepper

  • 2 very ripe avocados, halved, seeded, peeled, and coarsely mashed


  1. Spread Chunky Guacamole on one split side of each of the rolls; spread Refried Beans on the other split side of each roll. Pile Carnitas on the bottom half of each roll; close rolls. Generously ladle Red Chile Sauce over rolls. Sprinkle with cheese. If desired, top with pickled jalapeño peppers.


  1. Trim fat from meat. Cut meat into 1-1/2-inch cubes. In a Dutch oven cook meat, half at a time, in hot lard over medium-high heat, stirring to brown meat evenly. Remove meat from Dutch oven. Add onion and garlic to Dutch oven; cook until lightly browned and tender. Return all of the meat to Dutch oven.

  2. Add the water, orange peel, orange juice, thyme, salt, oregano, crushed red pepper, and bay leaves to Dutch oven. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 2 hours. Remove lid; increase heat so mixture boils gently. Cook, uncovered 30 to 40 minutes or until nearly all of the liquid has evaporated, gently stirring occasionally. Discard thyme sprigs and bay leaves. Using a slotted spoon, transfer meat to a serving bowl.

Refried Beans

  1. Rinse beans. In a large saucepan or Dutch oven combine beans and 4 cups of the water. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Cover and let stand for 1 hour. (Or place beans in water in pan. Cover and let soak in a cool place overnight.) Drain and rinse beans.

  2. In the same saucepan or Dutch oven combine beans, 4 cups fresh water, and the salt. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 2-1/2 to 3 hours or until beans are very tender. Drain beans, reserving liquid.

  3. In a heavy large skillet heat bacon drippings. Stir in garlic. Add beans, mash thoroughly with a potato masher. Stir in enough of the cooking liquid (about 1/4 cup) to make a pastelike mixture. Cook, uncovered, over low heat for 8 to 10 minutes or until mixture is thick, stirring often.

Red Chile Sauce

  1. In a 4-quart Dutch oven combine broth, onion, and garlic. Bring to boiling; reduce heat to medium. Simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Stir in chile peppers and tortilla pieces; remove from heat. Cover and let stand for 30 minutes.

  2. Transfer half of the chile pepper mixture to a food processor or blender. Cover and process or blend until smooth. Strain processed or blended mixture through a fine-mesh sieve; discard solids. Repeat with the remaining chile pepper mixture. Return strained mixture to the Dutch oven. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer sauce, uncovered, for 15 minutes or until slightly thickened.

  3. Season to taste with salt and hot pepper sauce.

Chunky Guacamole

  1. In a medium bowl combine tomatoes, green onions, lime juice, oil, garlic, salt, and pepper. Gently stir in avocados. Serve immediately or cover the surface with plastic wrap and chill for up to 1 hour.


Because chile peppers contain volatile oils that can burn your skin and eyes, avoid direct contact with them as much as possible. When working with chile peppers, wear plastic or rubber gloves. If your bare hands do touch the peppers, wash your hands and nails well with soap and warm water.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

819 Calories
35g Fat
87g Carbs
41g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 819
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 35g 45%
Saturated Fat 10g 50%
Cholesterol 84mg 28%
Sodium 1474mg 64%
Total Carbohydrate 87g 32%
Total Sugars 10g
Protein 41g
Vitamin C 20.7mg 103%
Calcium 171.6mg 13%
Iron 7mg 39%
Potassium 1408mg 30%
Folate, total 229.8mcg
Vitamin B-12 1.2mcg
Vitamin B-6 1mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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