Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Panaderia Don Pancho

Panaderia Don Pancho
(916) 363-9080

After reading some reviews for Da Nang, we decided to check it out. As we pulled into a parking lot, I noticed a sign that said,"menudo pupusas." I thought cool, I just found out about pupusas a few months ago when I was in LA and I will have to comeback and check this place out. For one reason or another we always seem to try to eat out for lunch on Sunday, but many places are closed. Da Nang was no exception. So instead of pho we got a few pupusas.

A pupusa (from Pipil pupusawa) is a thick, hand-made corn tortilla that is stuffed with one or more of the following: cheese (queso) (usually a soft Salvadoran cheese called Quesillo), fried pork rind (chicharrĂ³n), chicken (pollo), refried beans (frijoles refritos), or queso con loroco (loroco is a vine flower bud from Central America).

The place is a little family run business that reminded me of some of the ones in my old neighborhood. As you walk in there are a bunch of pinatas hanging from the ceiling. It make you want to grab the nearest stick and start flailing away. We ordered a few pupusas revueltas that contained some shredded pork and beans and pupusas con queso. The flavors were kind of muted. You really could not taste the beans or the pork, just a combination of the two and the masa. It was not either good or bad, just different. It's like meat and potatoes in a handy carry size food.

We also ordered a steak burrito to see how it was. It was different in a good way. Some of the herbs and spices that were used were different. The major thing I noticed was use of more fresh cilantro that brought and freshness and lightness to the heaviness of the steak. I am not sure what other differences there were, but I am going to have to go back and get another one and do some more taste testing.

After I was done ordering, I guess I was so excited about getting pupusas that I did not even notice the shelves of pastries behind the glass. They had many of the traditional Mexican pastries as well as some other ones. We bought about five or six of them. None of them were very good; they were all kind of dried out so I am not sure if they were day old or what.

Pupusas Revueltas: A mixture of chicharrones, cheese and refried beans.

Salsa roja: A simple tomato sauce

Cinnamon and sugar dusted concha

Apple turnover