Monday, January 14, 2008

Taqueria de Anda

What is better in the morning than Chinese food and leftover Pizza?
And I am not talking about any breakfast burrito. I am talking about spicy little wonders. So yes, you have heard about these wonders once before. But you haven’t tried these little fiestas in your mouth. Taqueria de Anda relit my fervor for tacos last year. These tacos were the ones that haunted my dreams. I walked the busy streets of New York longing and yearning for the taste.
Despite its uncanny resemblance to an old MacDonald's, a giant play structure sits outside the building, what matters is the inside. This is what I consider a true Happy Meal: Super size horchata and four chicken tacos.
But don’t let these appearances deny you of true yumminess. They get so crowded at night (because of the night club in the back), that they have a taco truck stationed outside the restaurant. In addition, they serve pig intestines, cow’s head, and tongue plus the usual carnitas, pollo and carne asada. The first time I went there, they did not even have cheese. (Traditionally, there is no cheese on tacos) There expertise is one thing: TACOS.
The man who prepares the taco does it with such finesse. He takes two small tortillas in his palm, then grabs red chicken and then goes in again for cilantro and onions. Finally he tosses the green sauce on top, a little jump in the air before the sauce reaches the chicken landing pad. He does this in about 5 seconds much shorter than it has taken me to describe. His movements are fluid and demonstrates that he has been doing this for a while.
What makes these chicken tacos better than others? The meat. The chicken is very tender and pulls apart yet it has a coating of red spices. With these delicious tacos, they serve fresh jalapeno slices, onions, cilantro, red sauce, green sauce and key limes (sweet little limes that give these tacos a balance of acidity.) Sounds familiar, well every good taco in my book (the taco bible) is served with key limes.
They have multiple locations, so one is always within reach in the vast expanses of Orange County. But for you who stay away from Southern California ( and you should), you should feel a tang of guilt that you cast aside all OC as flashy cars, bikinis, strip malls and a feeling you can’t shake off that is what hell must be like. But if you look hard, Southern California has little niches of cultural vibrancy displaying its grandeur through delectable bites, one being the ultimate Taco. (Beware of tacky website - don't let this dissuade you)

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