Spanish for "little fat one," a gordita is a thick (about ¼ inch) tortilla made of masa, lard and water or stock and sometimes mashed potatoes. These flat cakes are first partially baked on both sides on a dry comal (griddle) just until the masa is set. When cool enough to handle, the edges of the gordita are pinched slightly so that about a ¼-inch ridge is formed all around the perimeter. The cake is then fried in about ½ inch of oil. The fried gordita is then filled with ground pork or chorizo and topped variously with cheese, shredded lettuce, onion, etc.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.