Nopalitos Con Huevo: A Favorite Breakfast Of The Glutster
For you long time readers of mine, its no secret that La Casita Mexicana has a soft spot in my heart. Actually, its the only place I wholeheartedly recommend to anyone that asks me "Where do I eat Mexican? Its the only all around Mexican place in L.A that I can personally vouch for to be quite honest. There is not one single time I've gone--invited or not--where every single bite of the food was not a pleasure in itself.
Time after time, dish after dish, each bite never ceases to sweep me off my feet somehow, no matter what I get and how many times I get it. I've never seen such a high commitment to quality carried out so intensely. This is Mexican Food that satisfies more than just hunger for me, rustic yet refined, ultra-traditional yet executed progressively...its Mexican food that strikes a harmonizing chord with the beat of me: A 21 year old 2nd generation Mexican-American living in East L.A on his quest to find myself, my roots--through food.
And could you believe that after all this...I still hadn't had their effin Chilaquiles!?
Chilaquilitos Rojos: Spicy, Savory Dry Heat
Well I think it was about damn time.
Fortunately, I have really grown close to Jaime Martin Del Campo and Ramiro Arvizu in this last year that I've known them. It doesn't hurt that these two are already the most humble, nicest chefs in L.A probably. A couple of weeks ago, they had invited to me to come down to bell on a groggy Wednesday early morning to finally have the honor of finally tasting their highly esteemed Chilaquiles, they were doing filming an early morning piece for their weekly segment they have on the Spanish morning show "Despierta America" on Univision and were finished by 8:00 AM.
And my oh my, so many wasted breakfasts.
They make their Chilaquiles here with freshly fried tortilla chips that they make in house, briefly sauteing the chips in one of their various sauces just so they adhere beautifully but not to make soggy: Mole Poblano, Pipian de Pepita, Pipian de Cacahuate, Salsa de Tomatillo, Chile Rojo, Chipotle. Meaning they have over SIX different Chilaquile variations. (Divorciados being the last choice; where you get to choose two that are 'divorced' by a thick boundary line of cold and creamy Crema Mexicana)
Each sauce adhering to the chips differently, the pipian thick and rich, the tomatillo thin and tangy. To make a perfect chilaquile is like skillfully cooking a dried pasta, a second shorter and it will just be watery wet chip, a second over and you will have have the beginning stages of a tortilla soup. One a many times, even my mom overcooks them. But I am ecstatic to say that here, it is a mastered craft.
Chilaquiles De Chile Verde: Tangy And Crispy
Thanks to Jaime and Ramiro for finally having me over para desayunar and thank you for bringing the time honored, traditional foods of my cultures past to an otherwise Northern Mexican barren wasteland of Los Angeles.
Jaime Martin Del Campo and Ramiro Arvizu
La Casita Mexicana
4030 Gage Avenue
Bell, CA 90201-1127
Open Daily 9am-10pm
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