Chalupa

Last month I worked at a summer school program and I didn’t take lunch because I had these expectations that this college in Los Angeles would have many ethnic restaurants around.

There was a pizzeria, a sushi restaurant and………..Taco Bell.

It was Taco Bell fused with KFC, so customers could order fried chicken and liquid cheese (no by itself, but as an integral component of many Taco Bell dishes).

Okay, i was in Long Beach and the lunch situation was grim. I didn’t have much time so I went into the Taco Bell-KFC hybrid.

Taco Bell was something I dreamt about during my sojourn in Singapore. 

The fantasy version of Taco Bell is much better than the sad truth. 

The chalupa sounded promising. 


In lieu of a taco shell a fluffy pita-like bread substance was used. The pale iceberg lettuce and tomato chunks made this a healthy lunch. 

The meat was the traditional Grade D beef used by Taco Bell chefs for ages.

The jalapeños were the soft olive colored pickled ones that cost $2 for two quarts. 

Sadly the cheese wasn’t liquid. 


The Doritos taco was pretty good. I devoured it before I even thought about blogging this elegant repast. 


Adding to the ambience were dirty tables and filthy floors. 

Chorizo Tacos

Apparently there’s a new Mexican restaurant in town. I wanted either carnitas or shrimp and they had neither. I settled for chorizo tacos and they were good.


I would have preferred some green on the plate, but the chorizo meat was spicy and greasy. The house made salsas were tasty and the muy picante salsa was spicy!


The name of the restaurant is Tres Marias. 

Fish Tacos Plate ( Del Taco)

Del Taco is a fast food chain of Mexican restaurants. It’s definitely better than Taco Bell. However, they don’t serve carnitas en salsa grande, so Del Taco will never make into the upper echelon of favorite Mexican restaurants.


That was just too much food for one person. I don’t know if they made the refríed beans with lard, but they were smooth. The shredded cabbage was fresh and crisp and complemented the fried fish. The tortillas were fresh and the hot sauce is genuinely spicy. 

Fried Chicken Burrito

I went to Danny Trejo’s Cantina this afternoon with one of my brothers.


Danny Trejo’s pockmarked visage is omnipresent in this restaurant on Cahuenga Avenue in Hollywood. The menu looks good and I will return. 


This was awesome! Crispy strips of fried chicken, corn, rice, black beans, cheese and tomato were put together to make a tasty meal. 

The house chipotle sauce was savory and earthy but the house hot sauce was even better. 
There are so many reasonably priced restaurants in Los Angeles I really have to step up my game, as it were.  

Steakhouse Nachos

Great marketing by Taco Bell enticed me to get these a while ago. I have been seriously slacking on this blog, but have no fear, when I move up to Los Angeles in two weeks I will post more often.

 

I mean steak on Nachos sounds great, right? In theory it could have been great.

In practice it was disgusting. The ‘steak’ was chewy and vaguely steaklike in flavor. It was most likely highly processed Grade D beef. The retried beans were most likely made with hydrogenated vegetable oil instead of lard. They were a tasteless paste. Even the hot sauce couldn’t save this slop.

  • The picó de gallo was lacking in cilantro.
  • Overall a sad experience. 

The quesadilla was okay, but I’m afraid I’ve fallen out of love with Taco Bell. 

Shrimp tacos

I was with my brother last week and we went to Los Panchitos in Point Loma. I didn’t want fried shrimp, but that’s what was served. Either I didn’t read the menu carefully or the entry didn’t mention that they were fried. I’m working on my Spanish, so it could have been that.


They were covered in a spicy creamy sauce. One would have been enough for lunch, along with some chips, maybe. I try not to eat huge lunches when I’m going to exercise later. 

The tortillas were freshly made and the cabbage was nice and crunchy. I wanted to try more of the housemade salsas, as those I had were very good. 

The shrimp were plump and delicious. 


The menu is extensive and they serve oysters, so I will return. 

Mushroom Corn Tacos

What I really wanted was huitlacoche quesadillas. Or just one. Instead, I ordered this at a Mexican restaurant in the Gaslamp District last month.

What is huitlacoche you ask?

It’s a fungus that grows on corn. It is delicious and I have eaten it exactly one other time. I wanted to go to the place that serves it in Chula Vista, but I wasn’t driving.


The presentation was good and everything tasted fresh. But I was still hungry afterwards and it was fairly bland.


The margarita was decent. Earlier, I had walked around downtown with my brother. We saw some Indians protesting the Navy using an ancient burial ground for some nefarious purpose.


It was a beautiful day.

The huitlacoche quesadillas of Texcoco Es Aquí beckon.