L.A.’s Street Vendors Say “Legalize It”

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Part of the fabric of Los Angeles, equal in some regards but in others even more essential than the mighty taco truck, are our street food vendors. With products ranging from bacon-wrapped hot dogs to grilled chicken to fresh-cut fruit and juices, these hard working entrepreneurs serve a huge number of people every day in the city of Los Angeles. By and large, they do so on the fringes of legality. In fact, it’s illegal even if the vendor has paid the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health for official street vending permits and the vendor’s cart is able to pass a sanitation inspection. Subsequently, street vendors are vulnerable to police and inspector harassment, intimidation, and loss of property.

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How To Make Mole Coloradito Curry Chicken (Recipe + Video) with Bricia Lopez

Shot and edited by Fernando Lopez, the video above features Bricia Lopez of the world-famous Guelaguetza Restaurant in Los Angeles. Combined with the recipe below, you’ll learn how to make delicious mole coloradito curry chicken at home. Enjoy it for dinner and then the leftovers will make great tacos the next day… You can get more recipes and jars of authentic mole at ILoveMole.com.

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Interview with Tony Konecny, Coffee Mastermind behind LA’s Tonx.org

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Tonx.org is an L.A. based coffee purveyor that brings carefully sourced and roasted beans to your door every other week. You can try a free trial of their service here. Founder Tony Konecny has been active in the coffee world for some time now and helped ignite LA’s current movement towards better and better quality coffee. We wanted to find out more about Tonx, coffee in LA, and of course his favorite taco spot…

What’s your favorite taco spot?

Tacos Leo truck on Venice at LaBrea is a favorite. Guisado’s in Echo Park of course.

 

What is the biggest misconception about coffee?

Can I only pick one? Seriously, there are so many legacy misconceptions and new ones appearing every day.

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Bang for your Burger Buck ~ Patra Burgers on Sunset

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It is the last month of Summer. Your Los Angeles Dodgers have set a franchise record 15 game win streak on the road. You shall revel their return, in person, to Chavez Ravine this Friday. There will be beers. There will be pre/post game burgers. Considering a draft lager is running you $10 a pop, you are in dire need for some Bang for your Burger Buck. It is high time you met Patra Burgers on Sunset.

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The Jolly Oyster Kitchen Has A Fried Oyster Taco That Will Haunt Your Dreams (In the Good Way) ~ Ventura State Beach

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The Jolly Oyster Kitchen serves Thursday through Sunday, 12:00 to 7:00 P.M., at San Buenaventura State Beach Park.

Despite the South Coast’s surfeit of shoreline, ocean-adjacent dining hardly has  any sea-legs in Southern California. Private playgrounds clog the cliff-sides of the Pacific Coast Highway, which comes dotted with the occasional high-priced or low-quality surf-and-turf chain, their high rents leaving little space for organic expressions of the Pacific palate, nor the sterling sea life sourced from the Santa Barbara Channel and surrounding depths.

Visitors and locals alike will be stumped to find signature seafood recipes akin to Maine’s lobster rolls or Maryland’s crab houses that truly reflect our relationship with Southern California’s native shores. Our favorite fried fish tacos were ferried in from points south; our cioppino arrived from the north. The Central Coast’s prized urchins and spot prawns are considerably more likely to be shipped to Japan or relished in an Encino strip mall sushi spot than in the region’s seaside restaurants. And even though places like the Redondo Pier’s Quality Seafood makes crustaceans, whole fish, and molluscs approachable, eating by the beach in L.A. typically means someone is going to Gladstone’s or Neptune’s Nets, more famous for their ocean vistas than their seafood selections.

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Boris Karloff’s Guacamole Recipe

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The great Boris Karloff was born in England, found fame as Frankenstein’s monster (and also played Frankenstein, thank you, readers, for the correction) in Hollywood, and finished his career in Mexico (awesome example at the end of this post). Somewhere along the way he developed a strong affinity for Mexican food, as the article above, found on BadassDigest, explains, along with telling its readers that guac is an “avocado-based sauce”. His recipe for guacamole has an English twist, with a dash of sherry thrown in along with more common ingredients:

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Bang for your Burger Buck ~ Marty’s on Pico

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“Back in the day, when I was a teenager, before I had status, and before I had a pager . . . ”

It’s 1996. A Tribe called Quest is blaring out the car window. I just wrapped up an Apple Pan run soon to be followed by a screening of Rumble in the Bronx and some mall loitering at the Westside Pavilion. $11 lighter after leaving Apple Pan, I only wish knew then what I know now: Marty’s on Pico is West LA’s answer for Bang for your Burger Buck.

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Scenes From The 4th Annual L.A. Street Food Fest

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Photos: Tatiana Arbogast

Thank the gods for ceviche. Without the chill of cured, fresh fishies and the bright pinch of citrus, the TACO team might have short-circuited this past Saturday, the Pasadena heat staging another brutal attack on the hungry, hungry hippos attending the fourth annual L.A. Street Food Fest at the Rose Bowl. Despite the humid Hellosphere choking this annual bashment, the day-long festival marked yet another great get-together amid a season of awesome culinary celebrations of L.A.’s strong state-of-the-street and international bloodlines. Over 100 faithful food vendors, trucks, and restaurateurs churned out a staggering selection of regionally-diverse, definitively delicious creations, including Chinese dumplings, Neapolitan pizza forged on the tail of a fire truck, Indian butter chicken, vegan jackfruit tacos and tempeh tacos, Japanese musubi, Singaporean chili crab gumbo and New Orleans jambalaya,  German currywurst, falafel sliders, pho, pupusas, duck curry meatballs, and pastrami hot dogs just to skim the surface. Impossible to try it all, the most prevalent themes appeared to be our old pal pork, found among gut-busters as smoked pig candy from Bigmista’s BBQ, pig skin salad from Bell’s Corazon y Miel, Flor de Yucatan’s famous cochinita pibil, shaved Spanish ham, pork empanadas, and get this, sausages that played music when you beat them with tongs. And of course, the aforementioned and true savior of the day, cartloads of killer ceviche, cooling people down in the Taste of Mexico-curated section that was the day’s highlight. But enough of our gabbing. Whaddya say? Let’s perv out on some food porn!

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Ceviche and aguachiles (above) from Bell’s Casita Mexicana.

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Bang for your Burger Buck ~ Yuca’s Los Feliz Hillhurst

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Because somedays you just say “Fuck it. Give me a double chili cheeseburger.”

For the record I am not a chili cheeseburger kinda guy. I like chili on occasion. I like cheeseburgers very often. But I don’t need them at the same time. Much like the argument with bacon, good beef patties don’t need friends from the meat department. But we are at the original Yuca’s on Hillhurst; a venerable, James Beard award winning taco stand, where Cochinita Pibil is simmering away in a corner burner, skirt steaks are getting a serious char on the griddle and the cashier is practically giving away double chili cheeseburgers at a price of $5 with tax – I think you realize why I had to go for it.
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A Look Back At The First Annual Tacolandia ~ Hollywood

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“Yo-ho, yo-ho, a taco life for me.” The benefits of the taco lifestyle were on naked display to everyone at Tacolandia, Saturday’s celebration of the city’s favorite staple. These convictions were doubly confirmed spying the event’s culinary curator, Bill Esparza, strutting through the massive with Miss Los Angeles on one arm and Dita Von Teese on the other. Direct benefits of the man’s dedication to this here taco life. In fact, everyone at Hollywood’s Palladium that afternoon reaped the rewards of Esparza’s epicurean experience and deep connections to gifted chefs as various and voracious members of L.A.’s many taco tribes joined up under the sun in the parking lot of the Palladium to sip drinks and shoot the breeze, all while eating very well. (Continued)

Score A Discount To L.A. Street Food Fest, Returning To The Rose Bowl June 29

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The Big One is back! Next Saturday, June 29, L.A. Street Food Fest returns to Pasadena’s Rose Bowl with over 100 restaurants, food trucks, pop-ups, and sidewalk chefs preparing street-style specialties in an all-you-can-eat orgy of traditional and trailblazing recipes. The lineup of savories alone, as you see above you, resembles a culinary Coachella. Serious specialists like Bigmista’s BBQ, the barbacoa bravos from San Diego’s Aqui Es Texcoco, Starry Kitchen, Inglewood’s Coni’Seafood, Oaxaca’s own Rodolfo Castellanos, 9021Pho, Tijuana’s Javier Plascencia, Rivera’s John Sedlar, Bell’s Corazon y Miel, Grilled Cheese Truck, Octavio Olivas’ The Ceviche Project, Ensenada’s El Coraloense, and El Monte’s mind-blowing Dragon Whiskers candy chap will be among the many artists uniting for the six-hour affair. The annual festival has also turned into a surprise springboard for cool forthcoming concepts, and this year will also feature a beer garden, seven cocktail bars, an ice cream social, and commando clothing boutiques. Last year, there were a lot of sponsors giving away free swag like entire bottles of K.O. Ketchup, putting a little more icing on the cake of an all-day, all-you-can-eat booze and food feast. Every one who enters also gets a free ticket to the O.C. Fair to cavort with barnyard animals and deep-fried foodstuffs. Check out the full roster of participating restaurants on the event’s website, and get a $5 discount on the $50 Gen-Pop and $75 VIP tickets when you buy through Eventbrite using the code “LATaco13.” See you at The Street Food Fest!