I often dream of visiting my favourite torta stall in Mexico and devouring this giant sandwich, which is extremely hard to eat because of its ridiculous size.






Skill level

Average: 5 (1 vote)

It’s super easy to make and you can swap out any of the ingredients with your favourite fillings – just grill and layer them up.


  • 1 large telera (torta roll) or french roll
  • 1 tsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp whole-egg mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp frijoles refritos (see Note for recipe )
  • 1 avocado, mashed
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • ¼ white onion, sliced
  • pinch table salt
  • 50 g stringed oaxaca, manchego, panela or american cheese, shredded
  • pickled jalapenos or chopped chipotle chillies in adobo sauce, to taste

Veal schnitzel

  • 1 free-range egg, lightly beaten
  • 150 ml full-cream (whole) milk
  • 1 tsp table salt
  • pinch freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 veal minute steak
  • 100 g dried breadcrumbs
  • 50 ml vegetable oil

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


If making the refried beans (friojles refritos) using the recipe in the notes, this recipe needs to be started a day in advance.

1. To make the veal schnitzel, combine the egg, milk, salt and pepper in a bowl. Add the veal and soak for 3 minutes.

2. Place the breadcrumbs in another bowl, then add the soaked veal and press the breadcrumbs into the steak, making sure it's completely covered on both sides.

3. Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat, add the schnitzel and cook for 2–3 minutes on each side until crisp and cooked through. Place the schnitzel on a plate lined with a paper towel to drain, then slice into 3 cm wide strips. Wipe out the frying pan.

4. Slice the bread roll in half. Spread the butter on one side and mayonnaise on the other side.

5. Heat the frying pan over low heat, then place the buttered half of the roll butter side down in the pan, and the other half of the roll mayonnaise side up in the pan. Once the buttered half is lightly toasted, flip it over and spread the frijoles refritos over the top. Lightly toast, then remove both roll halves from the pan. Spread the avocado over the mayonnaise and top with the tomato, onion and salt.

6. Preheat a grill to high. Sprinkle the cheese over the veal schnitzel. Grill the schnitzel and cheese until the cheese melts (the cooking time will depend on the kind of cheese you are using: American cheese melts quicker than Oaxaca cheese, for example), then pile the cheesy schnitzel on top of the onion and add pickled jalapenos or chipotle chilli to taste.

7. Close the roll halves together so you have one giant torta and dig in!



• To make the frijoles refritos, rinse 300 g dried black beans then soak overnight. Drain, rinse and place in large saucepan with 1 bay leaf, ½ white onion, 15 g salt and 1.5 litres water. Boil for 30 mins, reduce to simmer for 40 mins until beans are soft. Remove and discard bay leaf and onion, conserve cooking water and remove beans. Heat 2 tbsp vegetable oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add ½ white onion, diced, and 3 tomatoes, diced and cook for 4 minutes or until softened. Add the black beans and cooking liquid and stir through. Using a potato masher, crush the beans until they are half mashed, adding a little extra cooking liquid if the mixture is very thick.
Add a pinch of epazote (if using) and stir the beans for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat.


Recipe and image from Comida Mexicana by Rosa Cienfuegos (Smith Street Books, RRP $45).