VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Garnachas Istmeñas

A take on sopes, this fun and easy appetizer will delight the children and adults alike. Developed by Bricia Lopez, Chef and Co-Proprietor of LA’s Guelaguetza

Total Cook Time: 3 1/2 hours

Servings: 10 (2 Garnachas per person)


1 cabbage, cored and thinly sliced
2 carrots, finely sliced
2 tsp. salt, divided
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
8 ounces Las Palmas® Original Style Enchilada Sauce, divided
1 lbs. beef flank steak, cut in two equal pieces
1/4 onion, thinly sliced
3 garlic
2 bay leaves
1/2 white onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. dried oregano
1/4 cup olive oil
salt to taste
8 red plum tomatoes, smoked, roasted and peeled
2 garlic cloves
2 lbs. fresh corn masa, for tortillas
1 cup safflower oil, high-heat
1 cup queso Cotija, finely grated

  • Combine the cabbage, salt, vinegar and ¼ cup of Las Palmas® Original Style Enchilada Sauce in a large bowl and mix together. Allow to sit for at least three hours, stirring occasionally.

  • Put the flank steak, the thickly sliced onion, garlic, bay leaves, and salt to taste in a large pot and add water to cover. Bring to a simmer and skim off any foam that forms on the surface. Let simmer until the meat shreds easily. This will take 20 to 30 minutes.

  • When the beef is tender, turn off the heat. Remove the beef from the broth and let it cool. Trim off any excess fat from the beef, then finely shred the beef with your hands. Add the meat to the food processor and grind until all the shredded pieces have been processed.

  • Transfer the meat to a bowl and add the remaining onion, oregano, olive oil and salt to taste.

  • To smoke the tomatoes, place a griddle (comal, in Spanish) or heavy skillet under high heat until hot. Place the tomatoes directly on the pan and turn them often until the tomatoes are entirely black. Remove the tomatoes from heat and allow them to cool. Remove and discard skin. Combine the smoked tomatoes, the remaining Las Palmas sauce, cloves and salt in the food processor and pulse. Salsa must have a thick consistency. Adjust salt to taste.

  • To make the tortillas, make small round masa balls, the size of a ping pong balls, approximately 1 ounce each. Carefully place the masa balls between two sheets of plastic, one at a time. Firmly press with your hand until you have flattened them out to a thick tortilla, about 3-inches in diameter. Place them on a hot comal or griddle and cook both sides, turning them over after a couple of minutes on each side three times. After the tortillas have been cooked on a griddle, use fingers to pinch the outer edges to form a light rim.

  • Grab a separate sauté pan and heat up the high-heat cooking oil, creating a layer thick enough to fry only the bottom layer of the tortillas. Grab some of the meat and carefully place it on top of the tortilla, then place the filled tortilla on the hot pan. After a few seconds, carefully top off the garnacha with a couple tablespoons of sauce while still on the pan. Make sure you are using a splatter screen.

  • Sprinkle cotija cheese as desired on top and serve with the curtido on the side.