Houstonians are well acquainted with Mexican hangover cures including the offal soup called menudo, the pork and the hominy stew called pozole (or posole), and Tex-Mex barbacoa (slow-cooked meat from the cow's head). But consome de borrego (literal translation: lamb broth) is a relative newcomer to the local line-up of clasicos para los excesos del fin de semana.
I didn't have a hungover on Saturday morning, but I tried the consome de borrego at Tamales Doña Tere anyway. The broth contained some nice chunks of lamb, lots of garbanzo beans, and a little rice. It was served with three big, fat, hand-made tortillas. It was tasty, but nothing special.
If you want to taste a consume de borrego that will knock your socks off, go visit the Buey Y Vaca flea market on Airline some chilly weekend morning and have a Stryofoam container of piping-hot soup before you explore the massive Mexican mercado there.
The first time I ate consume de borrego, I confused it with the spicy goat broth of Jalisco called birria. The proprietors of the consome stall at Buey Y Vaca hailed from the Mexican state of Guerra, and they set me straight. Birria is chivo (full-grown goat) meat stewed in a broth with lots of chiles. Consome de borrego is a broth made from the drippings of barbacoa de borrego (barbecued lamb), served in a bowl with some of the barbecue meat. Both are delicious, but the birria is much spicier.
For another unexpected treat (and cure for weekend excess), try the caldo de barbacoa at Buey Y Vaca. The soup is made of Tex-Mex beef and it is nothing short of sensational! I am not sure it's an official hangover cure, but I promise next time I need my excesos remedied, I will go have a bowl and file a report.