The New Gastronome

Fire Tostadas

Lunchbox Issue

What better way to close a busy work week than to bring a spicy lunchbox with you to the office, inviting (or daring) your colleagues to a round of fiery tostadas?


“Tostadas” are crunchy tortillas, irregularly flat and ready to crack! Think of them as the perfect canvas for an open-faced taco. Since they are open, you can be extra creative with your choice of fillings – there’s only one catch: it needs to be able to be enjoyed “cold” or at room temperature. And yes, this means you can add sour cream in order to stay true to how people in Mexico would eat it.


This Mexican street food reminds me of those Friday afternoons when work was done and phones stopped ringing, so there was only one thing for my friends and me to do: escape to Frida Kahlo’s neighbourhood of Coyoacán in the South of Mexico City to visit its food market. Full of colours, aromas, noises, fried food, luchadores action figures and loud music. Coyoacán food market is one of my favourite places to eat tostadas, especially during Día de Muertos and always paired with a cold glass of agua de Jamaica, a hibiscus infusion.


I guarantee you that the 250,00 Scoville Heat Units of spiciness that the habanero pepper in this recipe comes with will bring some tears to your eyes – of joy, laughter, or pain is up to your spiciness tolerance. 






(makes 6 servings)



1kg chuck

20g salt

2 fresh bay leaf 

2g black pepper 

2g coriander seed

1g cumin seeds

2 garlic clove

1 white onion, cut in half



60g vinegar 

20g extra virgin olive oil

4g oregano

6g salt

1g black pepper

1 lime

1 purple onion, julienne cut

40g fresh coriander 

2 habanero peppers, finely chopped


Blue Corn Tostadas

80g nixtamalized blue corn flour

110-125g water

1g salt


Agua de Jamaica 

1lt warm water 

33g hibiscus flowers

sugar to taste




A. D V. E. R. T. I. S. I. N. G





Put all the ingredients into a pressure cooker and add enough water to cover the meat by 3 cm. 

Heat the pressure cooker until you can hear the whistle, then cook for one hour on medium to high heat. 

After an hour, turn off the heat and wait for the pressure cooker to cool down. Then, open it, take out the meat and let it rest for about 30 mins. Shred the meat using two forks.

Add the shredded meat into a bowl and mix it with the dressing ingredients. Feel free to add more habanero peppers if you want an extra spicy experience. 


Blue Corn Tostadas

Mix all the ingredients inside a bowl until the dough has a smooth, hydrated, but not sticky texture.

Portion the dough into small balls according to the size you want

Using a tortilla presser, press every single dough ball and cook them on a very hot pan until they become very crunchy.


Agua de Jamaica

Mix the ingredients inside a jar and leave them to infuse inside the fridge overnight. Strain the infusion and store it in an insulated water bottle, adding ice if needed.



The opinions expressed in the articles of this magazine do not necessarily represent the views of
The New Gastronome and The University of Gastronomic Sciences of Pollenzo.

Photos ©Aarón Gómez Figueroa. 

About the author

Aarón Gómez Figueroa

He studied design, gastronomy, photography and led a design agency for 10 years. In 2013, he earned a Masters degree in Food Culture & Communications at The University of Gastronomic Sciences and an MBA at the University of Bologna. Aaron works in Communications and as a food marketing consultant for various clients. He’s a lover of Instagram, discovering new bands, and time travel.