Kirk is busy doing something. Cathy is busy doing something else. ed (from Yuma) has been busy putting together this post on 4 different places in Yuma (in Arizona).
Kirk calls these type of posts "Cleaning out the Memory Card." I have pictures of interesting and good Mexican food I've eaten recently at several different small eateries. No point in doing a bunch of little posts, so I'll just throw them all together here. There should be something of interest in this post for almost any Yuman being.
Pollos El Correteado
In Yuma County, there are three different locations for this restaurant chain (I have no idea how widespread the chain is in Mexico, but there are locations in San Luis, Sonora). One location is on Main Street in Somerton, one is on 3E by the base, and one is on Eighth Street next to the Subway across the street from Food City:
These folks do one thing very well:
Great Mexican roasted chicken. What Pollo Loco aspires to be:
These are special chickens that have four legs, four thighs, but no breast or wing. That anatomical peculiarity puzzled me the first time I ordered a whole chicken ($9). Must be a damn strange looking bird when alive, but it looks pretty good when served:
The macaroni salad and the mashed potatoes are pretty much meh, and the salsa and the white corn tortillas (both gratis) are far from distinguished. So I usually get the chicken to go and have it with homemade macaroni or potato salad.
Rossy's used to be a small truck in a small space with rather poor lighting and great corn and hotdogs. Now the same small truck (and a little hot dog cart) occupy the large lot that was most recently Tata's:
The corn (with butter, crema, and cheese) is still good, if not especially good for you:
They now serve a range of decent tacos that you can decorate with guacamole, pico de gallo, shredded cabbage, and lemon wedges. A carne asada taco with all the fixings looks like this:
For me, however, the big draw of the place are the bacon-wrapped hotdogs which they will happily accessorize for you:
Love those grilled onions, along with salsa and who knows what else.
El Buen Taquito
Getting a meal at El Buen Taquito was not easy for Tina and I. First, the truck is almost hidden toward the back of a lot on the east side of Avenue B, about a block south of the intersection with Eighth Street. Then, after we had discovered it, every time we wanted to go there, the place was closed. We realized, finally, that it opened later than most of the other taco trucks in the neighborhood and is not open every evening. However, many times we would drive by – let's say returning from San Pedro or Rossy's – it would be open and busy, much busier than the truck called "Yuma's Best" just up the street from it.
Our luck changed a few months ago when we pulled up, saw the lights, and decided to find out why this place was so popular:
The menu is extremely limited, but very reasonably priced:
We ordered a variety – crispy tacos, tostadas, rolled tacos, and sopes along with a couple of aguas frescas. However, the first thing we were brought were little cups of incredibly rich and flavorful consommé:
The only meat used by this truck is beef, and the beef has been cooked a long time so that its flavor in the tacos and flautas is fairly neutral and background. The consommé, on the other hand, is as beefy as Arnold Schwarzenegger in his glory days.
Because the primary difference between the sope and the tostada are how thick the tortilla/patty is, it is hard from me to tell which one is which in my photographs. I think this is a tostada:
And perhaps this is a close-up of a sope:
Underneath the lettuce and cheese is a flauta:
In any case, Buen Taquita does one thing extremely well – deep frying. The tacos, flautas, sopes, and tostadas all had crunchy deep fried corn tortillas or patties. None of them was greasy; all of them were tasty. The sope was a little more chewy than the others. The soft meat and frijoles provided a flavor and texture contrast with the fried shells and abundant shredded lettuce. Everything was covered with cotija cheese.
Would I want to eat here every night? No, of course not. But sometimes you just gotta have crunch and this is the taco truck to provide it.
Taqueria Reyes recently opened in Palm Plaza on Avenue A, where Taqueria Jalisco had been in business for many years:
As well as providing a range of standard tacos, I am very fond of the tortas there, for example this one made with machaca:
Inside, there is a smear of frijoles, slices of avocado, chopped lettuce, tomato and mayo. I, for one, appreciate the pickled jalapeno, which I've always thought was perfect with tortas.
It comes with a choice of bread or tortillas and is served with all kinds of condiments including lemon wedges, oregano, cilantro, menudo spices, chopped onion, and a deep and powerful salsa:
After I add some condiments and stir it up, it looks like this:
Look at all that tripe and hominy! But what I find most truly satisfying about the Menudo here is that pata, a big piece of cow hoof. And when I get lucky, the hoof is completely covered with wonderfully chewy tendon:
Sooo goood!! While the soup overall is not as complex as the incredible sopa de pata at the old Pupuseria Cabanas (I still miss that place a lot), it's the best cow hoof I can find in Yuma. And cow hoof is a good thing.