While at O’Hare Airport in Chicago on a layover on a recent trip, I had one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever eaten in my life at Tortas Frontera. And this was at an airport. Crazy right? This thing was absolutely delicious and on my flight home I was scheduled to come back for another layout. Because of this place, I didn’t mind at one bit. The sandwich I had was a beer braised short rib torta and each and every bite was absolutely incredible. This is my attempt at recreating that sandwich. Instead of actually cooking beer braised short ribs, since I only had 30 minutes to make this sandwich I took an easier option of using a microwave roast beef in au jus. While you are going to get a much better sandwich is you do a beer braised beef short ribs, my attempted recreation came out pretty awesome.

Screen Shot 2015-06-09 at 2.27.22 PM

El Pepito Torta Recipe

Torta Sandwichtorta-150x150
YIELD: sandwiches (2 Servings)
PREP: 15 minsCOOK: 15 minsREADY IN: 30 mins
A delicious. unique sandwich that is out of this world.


  • 1 package roast beef au jus
  • 1/2 cup arugala
  • 2 rolls take & bake telera sandwich rolls La Breat Brand
  • 1 can black beans
  • 2 pieces Queso chihuahua You can use mazzarella if you cant find queso chihuahua
  • 1 serving pickled jalapenos Use tamed japanenos if you want the flavor and not the heat
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro Use more or less depending on if you like cilantro
  • 4 tsp lime juice fresh squeezed if possible
  • 2 tbsp olive oil High quality olive oil always tastes better!
  • 1 tsp lemon juice fresh squeezed if possible


  1. Start by putting your black beans in a pot, cooking on medium heat until hot and then smash them up. Add in two teaspoons of lime juice. Taste and add salt if you need to. Remove from heat.
  2. Microwave your roast beef au jus as instructed on the packaging. After removing it from the microwave, it will be hot so open carefully and add in the jalapenos into the beef and au jus.
  3. In a small blender, blend your sour cream, cilantro and 2 teaspoons of lime juice together. You may need to add a little bit of milk to the mixture if it’s too thick. Think almost like a ranch dressing consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Slice your sandwich roll in half and top the bottom part with your cheese. Put into a conventional oven and toast lightly. You don’t want to make your sandwich too crispy to just melt your cheese so don’t overcook it as you want a nice soft bread with a light crunch on the outside when you bite into this thing.
  5. Mix your olive oil and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice together and add salt and pepper to taste. Get a nice vigorous stir of everything and toss in the arugala and mix together.
  6. Now top the side of the sandwich with the cheese with the roast beef and jalapenos and top with the arugala. Pour the cilantro cream sauce on top.
  7. With the other side of the bread, dip the inside in the au jus sauce. The point is to add the flavor of the sauce, not make the bread soggy so don’t overdo it. Now spread some of the black beans over the bread and top the other half of the sandwich.