Recipe Details

Pork Tortas

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
Servings: 8


Cook to 145 F with 3 minute rest


8 French rolls, about 4-5 inches long, split; or bolillos from a Mexican bakery
1 16-oz can Mexican-style refried beans
1 pound Chile-Seasoned Braised Pork, *thinly sliced or chopped (may substitute thinly sliced roasted pork loin)
3/4 cup salsa
1 to 2 ripe avocados, peeled, pitted and thinly sliced
8 ounces Mexican queso fresco, crumbled, OR sliced Monterey Jack cheese

Chile-Seasoned Braised Pork:

3 pound boneless pork shoulder, OR 2-pound boneless pork loin
1/3 cup chili powder
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon oregano, preferably Mexican
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1-2 tablespoons chicken broth

Cooking Directions

Open rolls and spread approximately 1 tablespoon of refried beans on each face. Layer the bottoms of rolls with thinly sliced pork; top with some salsa, avocado slices and some cheese. Top with roll tops and serve. (Tortas can be made up to an hour ahead of serving; place on serving tray and wrap well with plastic wrap.)

Serves 8; recipe can easily be multiplied.

*Chile-Seasoned Braised Pork:
Mix together chili powder, thyme, oregano, cloves, allspice and hot chicken broth to make a paste. Rub paste over all surfaces of pork.
Place pork in a small roasting pan with a lid; add 1/2 cup water to pan; cover and place in 350 degrees F. oven for 2 hours, until tender. Remove pork from oven. Let pork stand, covered, for 30 minutes, moistening with pan juices before slicing or chopping. Can be made up to two days ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Reheat gently before serving.

Serving Suggestions

Spanish for "sandwich", this recipe can be used with leftover roast instead of the braised shoulder cut in the recipe. Serve with on a buffet for your favorite tailgaters or along side Pueblo Green Chile Stew.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 440 calories
Protein: 36 grams
Fat: 17 grams
Sodium: 780 milligrams
Cholesterol: 75 milligrams
Carbohydrates: 36 grams

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About the Cut: Shoulder

Pork shoulder is the top portion of the front leg of the hog. The terminology for pork shoulder can vary widely depending on the region. However, the lower ‘arm’ portion of the shoulder is most commonly called the arm picnic. The upper part of the shoulder, often called the Boston blade roast (also known as Boston- style butt), comes from the area near the loin and contains the shoulder blade bone.

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About the Cooking Method: Roasting

COOKING BASICS: 1) Preheat oven to 325 to 350 degrees F. (for pork tenderloin, roast at 450 degrees F.). 2) Trim much of the exterior fat from the roast; if roast has no fat cover, rub the surface with 1 to 2 teaspoons of oil. Season roast with herbs and other seasonings, if desired. 3) Place roast on rack in shallow roasting pan. 4) Do not cover; place in oven and roast to an internal temperature of 150 to 155 degrees F. for medium doneness. 5) Remove roast from oven. Allow it to "rest" for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing. This resting period allows juices to redistribute. Internal temperature will rise approximately another 5 degrees F.

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Tips and Tricks

Buying, Handling & Storage Tips

It is safe to cook frozen or partially-frozen pork in the oven, on the stove or grill without defrosting it first; the cooking time may be about 50% longer. Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. It is best if frozen pork roasts are cooked at an oven temperature of 325 degrees F. Do not cook frozen pork in a slow cooker.

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Butcher's Tips

To ensure doneness, check with a meat thermometer. A thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the cut should produce a temperature of 160°F for medium doneness

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