Friday, August 27, 2010

Taquerias Alma Latina #5 ― Houston, TX

Jackpot. It may have taken me all summer, through several venues and my own failed attempts, but I have found an immensely pleasing chicken fried steak sandwich….in a taqueria. Taquerias Alma Latina #5 is a wonderfully friendly place on Telephone Road, complete with colorful adornments inside and out. It’s just like ones you always pass by but never stop in to patronize (shame on you!).

Starved for a late lunch, I was delighted to see a milanese torta on the menu ($3.00). I ordered it with french fried, which were hot and tasty (large order $1.25) but lacking salt. Nothing special but they hit the spot. The torta was excellent. The bread was fluffy in the middle and crispy on the inside and out (notice the pressing marks on top). The meat was pork, so it’s not technically a CFSS, but that’s splitting hairs when you’re hungry. The breading was salty, garlicky just a little spicy. The thin pork cutlet was overcooked, but this gave a nice bite to the softness of the rest of the sandwich architecture. A healthy dollop of Mexican crema, a smear of avocado and a hint of mustard finished this fine sandwich.

A fortuitous find in an unlikely location. Well worth a trip to #5 (or any of the other numbers) for a delightful lunch.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Homemade CFSS - CFS Homestead, TX

Unable to find an appeasing CFSS for the past few months, I attempted to make my own at home. How hard could it be, right? A little tomato, mayo, mustard, avacado and a fried egg atop a crunchy CFS (frozen) should be an easy make.

Sadly, I failed (by my measure and as gingerly expressed to me by Mrs. CFS). The sandwich was overall too juicy, usually a plus, but the combination of ingredients just made muddle of the flavors. The bun (storebought) was soft and pliable but too big and soft. It needed more texture, perhaps a toasting.

The quest continues. Help me out, fair readers.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

T-Bone Tom's - Seabrook, TX

My hunger for a chicken fried steak sandwich (CFSS) unabated, we traveled to Kemah to T-Bone Tom’s for a weekend lunch.

With several “chicken fried” sandwich options, it was hard to make a choice. Setting on the CFSS, the sandwich came with gravy (on the side), lettuce, tomato, onion and pickles. After carefully building my sandwich, I took a bit. Excellent. The CFS was homemade and well cooked. The moistness of the CFS combined with the slight give of the sirloin made for an excellent bite. The veg additions provided an wonderful additional crunch especially the pickles and onions which gave the sandwich a nice sourness to complement the richness of the CFSS.

The enormous steak fries were the size of a remote control. They were fresh and came to the table piping hot.

Hot and tasty is hard to beat. Certainly worth a trip to the shore to try.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Tin Roof BBQ & Steaks ― Atascocita, TX

As we waited for our meals, our table #8 Texas flag marking our location, we felt very comfortable at Tin Roof. A random assemblage of tables, chairs, old furniture and country brickabrack on the walls (some of them tin), the restaurant feels very cozy and welcoming.

When it arrived, the CFS looked excellent but tasted bland. Not enough salt in the breading. The gravy was runny and tasteless. The meat was tough and flavorless. The breading was crunchy and flaky which was fine by itself but the accompanying compatriots were less than stellar. A little disappointing overall, and, because it was 12.99, it was clearly overpriced.

The sides shined, however. The macaroni and cheese was cheesy and rich with the perfect amount of bite to the pasta. The mashed potatoes were whipped hard but with the skins left on, making a great texture for the side. The two slices of white bread were grilled on a grill, which was odd, but provided a unique smoky taste.

But, it was the French fries which will make you want to come back. Homemade, hand cut, perfectly salted, plentiful and hot. Worth a return trip just to smell the basket.

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