Monday, November 22, 2010

Mapping Mexico One Bite at a Time

Richie and I went for haircuts the other day. Dale, the Tonsorial Parlor, has been cutting my hair for the past 27 years (and Richie's even longer.) We go together not because of any separation anxiety, but because the street parking in Manhattan Beach is nearly non-existent. And there's no parking lot near Dale, nor, come to think of it, anywhere but downtown Manhattan Beach.

Dale raved about a new Mexican restaurant so naturally, we drove directly to it the minute he'd finished with our hair. No time like the present and it was noon...

Teresa's Mosaic Cafe, 150 S. Sepulveda, El Segundo 310-648-7212
Apparently, the "mosaic" comes from the different areas of Mexico represented on their menu -- Sonora and Oaxaca and New Mexico (dessert sopapillas, a puffy, fried tortilla served with honey and powdered sugar.)

My beef taco and cheese enchilada were very good. ($9.50) Of course, they came with rice and beans! But the rice was very different -- imagine draining and adding a can of Veg-All to the rice and then tossing it with shreds of white cheese (like mozarella) and letting the cheese melt into the rice. Richie usually doesn't eat the rice, but he certainly lapped this version up.

Some of the things that aren't usually found on our Mexican restaurant menus --

Cazuela - traditional Sonoran beef soup from dried beef and potatoes. Small $4.50; large $8

Topopo - a version of a tostada with avocados, tomatoes, eggs, cheese, black olives and green chiles on a crisp corn tortilla with beans. $8

Tortas (Mexican sandwiches) - warm Telera roll "smothered" with beans and mayonnaise (!) topped off with salsa de aguacate, tomatoes, jalapenos and panela cheese. Meat choices are: breaded top sirloin or carne asada or chorizo - $8 apiece.

Tamales de Elote - sweet green corn tamales $12

Lomo Adobado - Sonoran style roast pork marinated in red spices $11

Camarones al Mojo de Ajo - garlic shrimp served with Calabacitas con queso (squash, corn, tomatoes, onions and cheese.) $15

And they even have fried ice cream for dessert! $4 (As well as a full bar and a tortilla making stand.)

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