Los Jarritos Menu Decoder

Our familiarity with Mexican menus shows up by how many words we know in Spanish just from ordering our favorites.

Morgan Ong
Morgan Ong  

Enchiladas, tacos and burritos might as well be considered part of the American diet. But some menu items at Los Jarritos go deeper into the cuisine of Jalisco and other parts of Mexico. Here are terms you’ll encounter at Los Jarritos that you might not be familiar with.

Carnitas – little meat, yes, but from a big piece of meat. Pork shoulder (butt) is braised in a huge copper vat for hours until it falls apart. In some parts of Mexico, the chunks of cooked meat are then crisped either by deep frying or roasting at a high temperature. But the Jalisco style brought here by the Placencia family presents the meat shredded but with a softer finish.

 

Horchata – a white beverage, rice-based, that gives the sensation of liquid rice pudding, complete with sugar and cinnamon.

 

Sopes – little tortilla patties with rim, shaped sort of like strawberry shortcake molded cakes. Corn masa is patted flat but thick, flipped on a hot griddle, then pinched by hand around the edge to form a rim, then the shaped sope is fried in about an inch of oil until cooked. The depression in the center is piled high with carnitas, sour cream, cheese and flanked by rice and beans.

 

Paletas – fruit bar on a stick. Los Jarritos makes them and wholesales them around town from a designated dairy factory seen through a viewing window in back of the restaurant. There’s two bases, cream and water. Coconut has a cream base. Watermelon has a water base. Other flavors include guava, strawberry, pineapple, orange. Sold under the name Rainbow or Fiesta.

 

Pozole – Los Jarritos has an advantage over many Mexican restaurants because it owns a factory, La Esperanza, that turns out fresh corn tortillas and prepares fresh masa for tamales. The kernels of corn that are steamed with [slaked] lime in preparation to make masa for tamales are also at a stage called hominy. Pozole is soup red from New Mexico chiles and hot from spices like cumin. Each serving should have a handful of corn hominy, some shredded cabbage, often radish and wedges of lime.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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