Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Foodie Girls Lunch Brigade - Episode 15

I felt like a stalker.   Let's face it, I was a stalker.    I'd caught a whiff, a taste of my quarry*, and I was now on the prowl with a vengeance.     But I was cunning.  I was sly.   I was patient.   And I was not alone.   Like wolves, we circled**, and the pack became one.  The pack was hungry.  Very hungry.

The prey was on the move.  Darting through crowds, vanishing*** into the night, then suddenly appearing out of nowhere.    Taunting.  Tantalizing.


@frysmith:  "Sorry! The Frysmith Truck is closed on Monday.  Catch us later this week!"

Great howls of rage and disappointment rose and echoed through the canyons.  But we were crafty, adaptive creatures, wise to the wiles of the jungle around us.   We had a back up plan that involved  pancakes.   The hunt began anew.

This time, the pack would not be denied.

Episode 15: Hey, Butter Butter!

Three starving FG's flew down the 405 on a recent Monday, heading for the last known locale of The Buttermilk Truck.   We parked and practically ran across the street, then stopped dead in our tracks as our eyes took in the menu.    Our base instincts took over.

FG3 and FG6 paralyzed at the sight of the options

FG3:  I'll have the breakfast sandwich with applewood bacon and the red velvet pancakes.  What?  Yes! Of course, I want the rosemary hash browns on the side for 50 cents!  And...and a tee shirt!   And a diet coke! 

She steps back, almost wild-eyed with excitement.

FG1:  (Breathlessly) The sliders!  We need the breakfast sliders, and an order of doughnuts.  How many?  Three should be good.

Growls from the pack.

FG1:  Five.  Make it five doughnuts.   And the brick.  The special brick.  We'll take one brick.   And a diet coke.

FG6:  The breakfast sandwich with the chicken apple sausage.  What?  You think you might be out of the chicken apple sausage?

The three of us glare up at the screen window balefully.  Teeth bared.

FG6:  Aha!  You have one order left.   We'll take it.  With hash browns. How do I like my eggs?  A little more on the done side, thanks for asking...Hey!  Hey, girls?  Did anyone order the french toast sticks?  Oh my god!  We forgot the french toast sticks!   We need french toast sticks.  How many?

She glances uneasily at the others.  They seem placated by the act of ordering.

FG6:  (Whispering)  Three.  I think we can manage with three.  And a water.

When the paper trays emerge from that truck, it is all we can do not to rip the food apart with our bare hands****.   The French toast sticks melt away in seconds, leaving a trail of cinnamon and syrup in their wake.   The breakfast sandwich is piping hot, with a curl of smoky bacon visible beneath the glistening fried egg and buttery biscuit.   It's mighty tasty, but almost beside the point after we bite into the hash brown cake that perches precariously on the side.    Fried to perfection with almost no hint of residual grease, the golden brown, crunchy outside yields to a pillowy white bundle of finely shredded potatoes with a hint of fresh rosemary inside.  Salty, creamy, and earthy all at once, it completely redefines the concept of breakfast potatoes with every bite.

We're riveted by the red velvet pancakes, but something***** makes us hold back.  Perhaps it is the sight of the brick.   A layer of hash browns.  A sunny-side up egg.  Smothered in spicy chorizo gravy.  With a biscuit on top.  Oh. My. Lord.   Decadent is not even the right word.   Ridiculously, crazy good is closer.   Admittedly, the biscuit is more flat than fluffy and resists our frantic stabs with the fork.  But it's so not the point of the dish.   This is about the gravy.  And the gravy rocks.

On to the sliders.  Hawaiian bread, lightly toasted.  Portuguese sausage rounds, grilled so they have great little charred bits on the edges.   A smattering of sweet, almost caramelized onions.  And a shoyu fried egg.   Magic on a bun.   This is the dish I will order when I come back.

With a side of doughnuts.   Imagine the best buttermilk bar you've ever had, right out of the fryer, as a doughnut hole.    So the ratio of  deep brown toasty outside to rich warm cake-y inside is perfect.   Now imagine that those little nuggets were tossed in a bag with powdered sugar the minute they left the vat, so the sugar clings to every nook and cranny, almost creating a second coat of goodness in the brief moment between the guy handing you the bag and you shoveling them into your mouth.   That's how good these were.   Honestly.

There were five, but two did not survive long enough to be in the photo

We were slowing down, but the forks made their way inevitably toward the pancakes.   With our stomachs nearly sated, we could now rise above the purely animal joy at the conclusion of a successful hunt.     The level of discourse rose from grunting with our mouths full to normal conversation, and at last, to an almost philosophical discussion of one of life's great mysteries:

Why on earth would anyone eat dry, crumbly cupcakes when moist, tender, warm bundles of chocolate heaven like this exist?

The pack had no answer to this, or any other important questions******.    The remains of the feast were picked clean, almost bleached white in the sun.   Like their elusive prey, the FGs  had to move on********.    But we will certainly strike again soon.   Find out where on our website!

FG Final Verdict?  The Buttermilk Truck is ON the list!
Pricing Info:  Most dishes $3-5
FG Value rating:  A steal!

* I happened across the FrySmith truck by accident one day, pulled over to the side of the road, and practically died of joy while devouring an order of their Raja Fries.   
** Actually, I sent out an evite.
*** The truck was in Atwater Village, which for some people in LA, is akin to vanishing.
**** Our dilemma was made even more problematic by the lack of knives at the truck.  Forks they had.  Knives, not so much.  And napkins were apparently only available to those who pestered the guys making breakfast.
***** Probably the huge dollop of cream cheese frosting and powdered sugar screaming "DESSERT!  DESSERT!  DESSERT!" at us.
****** Like the one posed by my husband upon seeing these photos:  "Where will you be going next?  The cardiology truck?"
******* It was almost time to pick the cubs up in carpool.

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