This is how I like to start my day. So tasty, actually had one torta for breakfast and a few hours later, a mid-afternoon snack. Although, I must admit, I can't entirely take credit for this scrumptious creation. I've had a torta of the likes at Xoco in Chicago, which I've enjoyed on numerous occasions. Sadly, no longer in Chicago = Sadly, no more Xoco breakfast tortas for moi. Until I return to Chicago, next best thing...make it myself.
I've been wanting to recreate this ever since I left Chicago almost a year ago. Not that it's difficult to make, just was afraid it would not live up to my expectations. Finally, decided to give it a whirl, and...I think Rick [Bayless that is] would give a nod of approval to my version. And really, how can anything with a poached egg on top not be good -- a duck egg to boot -- its yolk, even more thick and creamy than a chicken's egg.
This torta has layers of flavors. First, there is the layer of mashed black beans with garlic (and a little ground chipotle powder), second, a layer of fire-roasted tomato salsa, third, a poached duck egg (you can easily substitute with a chicken egg), and lastly, topped with chopped cilantro, thinly sliced jalapenos, and feta cheese, all on top a crispy, country baguette. I've also prepared three different salsas/sauces (just because one didn't seem like enough, then two didn't either; three seems just right).
Red = mild, fire-roasted tomato salsa
Green = medium, cilantro-jalapeno sauce
Orange = fiery, fruity habanero sauce (use sparingly, a little goes a long way)
Make one, make them all, or substitute with your favorite salsa.
At 200,000-350,000 scoville units, the habanero packs a punch. But, habaneros are not all about heat, they actually have a nice frutiness to them. A little tid bit -- capsaicin, the compound that gives chiles their heat, has been shown to release endorphins in the body. Eventually, enough are released to create a sensation that can be compared to a "runner's high". Maybe that explains my addiction?
Caution: Use sparingly. You've been warned...