State Fair Experience 2013

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         The Great Minnesota Get-Together is on once more to a bevy of local crowds! What can I really hope to try and say about this event known for its yearly display of Produce, Animals, Baked Goods, Music, Food, and of course, random carts filled with odd Inflatables…

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           After many years of distraction from a certain other (-cough-Medieval…) Fair, I only just returned to the food-fest that is the State Fair in 2012. It was so good to put my recently developed skills in food research, “restaurant” mapping and strategization into this event which I had been absent so long. Thank god I was able to do two days of it then, with how many things I had on the list, from now on I can focus purely on new foods and reserve the favorites for whenever.

           Speaking of New Fair Foods, I thought it would be fun to recount all my finds and experiences of this year, both new and old, famous favorites and hidden treasures. It won’t be a list of “every important food you should know” or whatever, but maybe I’ll hit something you haven’t seen yet, and you can share your own opinions on them or adverse experiences if you want!

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             Well, I went with my sis early on a sweltering summer morning, needing breakfast… so of course we had to have ice cream! Hamline Dining Hall sells Izzy’s Ice Cream flavors, and this year had their new Mini Donut Batter Crunch! Had to get it with a patented Izzy scoop of Salted Caramel, since Sis wanted to try it and they taste awesome together. The ice cream itself was as creamy and delicious as always, and I was very satisfied with the authentic mini donut flavor they were able to get through.

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              On that train of thought, the Ballpark Café shelled out 12oz glasses of Nordeast’s new Fair-special Mini Donut Beer. I was gonna have it right after the ice cream, actually, but they didn’t start selling until Noon, the bastards. But I got it later, in a glass rimmed with cinnamon sugar. My thoughts leading up to it were quite doubtful; not in the idea of a beer flavored with donut, that would be awesome. Apparently their “criteria” for naming it Mini Donut was simply this: it’s the same color, it’s really malty, and then we put cinnamon sugar on the rim.

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               I was very pleasantly surprised. Even if the beer, on its own, is probably only average or a touch above in quality, it was interestingly delicious with the cinnamon sugar. They actually combined to create this extra little note that truly did remind me of the donuts in a fun and different way. Definitely a good Fair drink.

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               The Sis then dragged me into the Food Building, away from my list to grab something from the hall of wonders. One of her Fair items of note, and not too bad a grab from the Food Building Standards (besides the Nitro Ice Cream, oh god), a Jerked Chicken Roti from Harry Singh’s Caribbean Restaurant. We also got a glass of their Ginger Beer, but that was just ok; could tell they just made a ginger-flavored syrup and turned it into a (non-carbonated) soda.

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                Next was a trip to Mancini’s, which debuted a plethora of new items this year. For me, the focus was the Porketta Pig Wings, basically small pork shanks cooked super tender, on the bone, with a flavorful spice mix seasoning. God these were good, so tender and flavorful; on seeing them I almost wished (and thought before) that there was a sauce, but they really don’t need it AT ALL. Great walk-around food, would be fun to see out of a Truck.

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              Oh, they also have a Gelato area with multiple areas. Another good place to get ice cream, along with one of my favorite discoveries last year: “Lingonberry Ice Cream.” A great stop for the locals who love it, but especially for any tourists/out-of-towners who haven’t had lingonberries yet.

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              With a disappointing attempt at their Sweet Corn Ice Cream last year, I once more returned to the Bluemoon Dine-in Theater (with food in front and a screen displaying old movies in the back) to try this year’s new “wonder item:” Comet Corn. Finally, we have another stand besides Nitro playing along with liquid nitrogen, taking a bowl of it and briefly dunking in Caramel Corn to freeze instantly for a fun, chilled Fair Treat. Or at least, that’s the idea… apparently, despite originally advertising it as Caramel corn, it’s also Cheese popcorn and Pretzel gold fish. All of the items of which being that cheap, mass-produced stuff one finds in giant tins; which, if it was just the caramel corn, I wouldn’t have minded. I sorta like it as a junk food, and it works well with the Nitro freezing; you even get to breathe a little bit of that fog, so fun.

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             I think I’ve sort of figured out something about Bluemoon, because I’ve had two years in a row where I’ve been quite excited to try them and both years I’ve been quite disappointed. It’s just how their items are; each year they come up with this new thing that sounds “so different, so unique, so childish and fun or retro” or whatever, it gets hyped up by them and other people. But at the end of the day what’s actually being made is just… not really that exciting, either in what it really is or how they do it. The Cereal Killer ice cream last year; it’s just mass-produced cereal flavored ice cream. The Sweet Corn was grainy and disgusting; I love corn flavor for desserts, but you have to do it right (I don’t understand how Zimmern liked it; did I just get a bad batch?). And now there’s this Comet Corn, charging us $5 for a small cup of super cheap popcorn.

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                Well, I needed something to cheer me up, obviously. So I thank my lucky stars my next stop was Ole’s Cannoli for their new Candied Bacon Cannoli! A Fair standard for years, they provide a perfectly crispy shell filled fresh-to-order with a deliciously smooth, sweet cream cheese filling. I expected them to sprinkle candied bacon pieces on the ends (as the picture advertized…), but they did something even better! They basically just took a whole strip and laid it in the cannoli before filling; this way we’re guaranteed bacon with each delicious bight. I hope they bring it back next year.

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                My sis needed coffee apparently, and a stop to one of her two Must-have items every year, Grilled Chocolate (and Raspberry) Sandwiches, so we stopped at Moe and Joe’s. Luckily for me, they also carried the new Grilled Glaze Donut, next on my list. Which was… quite disappointing. No real flavor comes from the grill, and the donut itself is just a basic, unimpressive donut, not really one you crave. Though it is better dipped in the strawberry sauce they give, and it’s only $2 so a good item for those on  budget (but you get what you pay for). As for the Grilled Chocolate Sandwich, normally it might be something I suggest, but I think the quality decreased this year… I could actually taste the “Hershey’s Syrup” aspect of it (could swear they used a different chocolate before). Though I usually stop by each year to see if they have different sandwiches; the Marshmallow Fluff one was tasty.

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               The next stop was another favorite of my Sister’s, and I think one of the great little hidden gems of the Fair. If you’re ever thirsty for something besides water, try heading to the International Bazaar, go to West Indies Soul Food, and grab a big cup of their Caribbean Lemonade (also with pineapple and I think maybe mango). It’s super tasty. They also sell a really good Jerked Pork Chop, for those who like Pork Chop on-a-stick and wanna try something different.

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               It’s no trip to the Fair without a Corn Dog (FINE, or a Pronto Pup… evil), and this year a new stand has revealed itself to sell their own Flavored” Corn Dogs. These include one with extra Corn, a Jalapeno and Cheese, and (as they highly advertise) a “Double Bacon,” which I of course had to get myself. Supposedly they advertise a hot dog, wrapped in bacon, dipped in a batter which has itself been mixed with chopped bacon, then garnished of course. I myself… didn’t taste any of it. I could see the bacon in the crust, but none of the flavor came through; the hot dog and fried batter was too strong. Plus, I don’t think they actually wrapped the dog in bacon… definitely a stand I suggest one avoid. Stick to a regular Corn/Pronto Dog.

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              Also had some of Sweet Martha’s of course, but forgot to take a picture… oh well we know they’re delicious.

              The fact that I even got through all of this, even if I only partially consumed most of it, in 4+ hours was just numbingly tiring. Thankfully we had to leave early, because I needed to lay down after the hot day, but there was ONE MORE stop I needed to make before being completely satisfied.

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               That’s right, Famous Dave’s. I so loved their Pork Knuckle dish last year, was sad to see it was a one year thing but very happy to get their new Cajun Pork Rinds. Though damn they give you a lot of them! Squeeze a bit of that lemon over (the acid cuts through the fatty fried skin really nicely, not to mention the spice) and dip into that White BBQ Sauce, and damn these are good. I think they actually do fry the skins themselves, at one point, but even if it is just mass-produced bought and flavored I don’t mind, it was a very tasty and happy experience. Though I had to take half of it home to finish… Sadly, I don’t think they’ll have them next year, but it’ll be interesting to see what new seasonal item they have in their place.

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               Well, that was my 2013 year at the Fair. My list of staples has expanded, though many new items have been cut, but either way I can’t wait to see what comes up in 2014! What’s your favorite foods, new and old?

SFC: Cream Cheese Chain Reaction

                My pursuit into Johnnycake for my Dad’s Father’s Day breakfast had me buying an entire tub of Shortening just so I could use a cup. With all that leftover, me and my cousin got into a recent habit of getting together to make pies; what better use of shortening than some flaky pie dough right? We’ve made Strawberry, Straw-Rhubarb, Apricot-Plum, and Apple with Butterscotch Crumble! Mmmmm, yum.

                In our recent week, my cousin’s expressed curiosity in the cooking of Cheesecake, which I myself hadn’t actually done in years… but I don’t know why. Either way I was excited to get back to it, especially with that particularly tasty recipe I used so long back.

                … yes, that is exactly what you think it is. I got the recipe off the box that my Springform Pans came in (if you don’t have any, a good round cake pan should do, just really make sure it’s nonstick). I don’t care. I made it 3+ years ago, and I still remember that it was GOOD; fresh, fluffy, and something I could actually eat in a whole sitting (comfortingly).

Basic Cheesecake

1 ¼ cups Graham Cracker Crumbs (about 1 package of 9 Crackers)

¼ cup Sugar

¼ cup Butter, melted

2lbs Cream Cheese (… 4 of the 8oz packages)

14oz (1 can) Sweetened Condensed Milk

4 Eggs

½ cup Flour

1 Tb Vanilla Extract and ½ Tsp Lemon Zest

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                We of course gotta start with the crust; it’s a great way to use any stale Crackers you have leftover from an old S’mores day. I just used a combo of the Honey and Cinnamon Sugar since I had them, ground up once again in my handy-dandy tiny-ass robocoup.

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                Mix with sugar and butter thoroughly, being especially careful with the butter; the final mix should look like this:

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                It should hold its shape nicely when squeezed, and not fall apart easily when prodded; you may need to adjust to get it where you want, that’s fine. It doesn’t have to be like a dough or cement or anything, but you get the idea. Press this into the bottom of your pan in a nice, even layer; don’t worry about trying to get a delicate, perfect little thin layer of it, it’s a pain in the ass (especially with any non-stick bottom like one should be using) and when it comes to cheesecake, ya need a nice, thick layer to stand up to that rich custard.

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                You may have leftover, like I did (just made a big batch to the ratios), which you COULD use to make another crust for some other pie or whatever in the future. Or, you could do what I did and mix in some of your favorite spices/flavorings, spread it out on a pan and bake in the oven to use as a “Graham Cracker Garnish,” either in big chunks or crushed up, for whatever dessert (or even savory dish) you want.

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                I was going to include a “tip” about wrapping the bottom section of the springform pan in parchment paper or foil to avoid leaks going in or out, but I don’t it’s an actual thing… I must have misheard something else, because if anything I think it might make MORE holes than less. I WILL say that you should wrap the bottom and sides in aluminum foil, like so. We WILL be cooking this in a water bath afterall.

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                Now, many recipes, this one in particular, say you can just leave the crust alone now and let it bake with the batter later. Don’t do this, just… don’t. Even if it does work in some situations, I say don’t take the risk; pre-bake the crust on its own, at about 350 for 10-15 minutes. It still won’t over bake when cooking with the batter later, and will stay nice and crunchy.

                Crust done, we can get to the batter. Make sure the Cream Cheese has been sitting out at room temp for at least half an hour to warm and soften up (covered of course); makes whipping it much easier.

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                … damn that’s a lot of cream cheese. I should probably note right now that I WAS making a double batch on the day in question…

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                Whip it, whip it good. Beat that cream cheese (don’t try and be manly here, just use an electrical/stand mixer of some sort, be thorough) until creamy and fluffy.

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                Probably the secret to why I love this recipe so much, we slowly add in the Condensed Milk, offering itself up to cover the job of sweetener and dairy in a rich yet lightly creamy style. I’m not sure what it’s actually doing, but I know I rarely see it in other recipes, and I like what it does to the cheesecake.

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                Next up comes the start to my favorite little trick in cheesecake cookery. Instead of adding them in whole, separate the whites and yolks from your Eggs. Those who still haven’t heard the caution yet, do this very carefully in a 3 bowl/container system: separate the eggs over one bowl, transfer the yolk to another and, IF none of the yolk spilled in, the whites to a third. This way, if the oily yolk breaks while separating, it doesn’t sabotage ALL the whites you gather; but it’s alright if white gets into yolk (I feel like this is an oddly acceptable double standard…), the recipe originally called for whole eggs anyways.

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                Carefully mix in the Yolks, Flour, and Flavorings until smooth and creamy.

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                Now comes the fun part (not eating, that comes later): take those reserved whites and whip them up separately. It doesn’t matter what you use, so long as it’s CLEAN of oil (which will get in between only a few protein chains to destroy the entire matrix you’re about to build) and you can whip it to where you need it to go. I would probably suggest going to the “soft peak” stage for those familiar with meringue making; basically once you whip it into this big cloud, should be able to take the whisk through and have the whites stay their shape while upside down, unless you tap it (stiff peaks, the next step, will act like flippin’ cement in how rigid it is, completely AWESOME for meringues). I like the softer whipped stages, cuz they’re able to make the cake a little “airy” and “fluffy” without turning it into what looks like a failed soufflé. Seriously, I did a cheesecake once with really whipped whites, it rose a bit while baking and once cool had this whole depression across the surface.

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                Slowly and carefully fold this into the batter in 1/3rds, the first part being used mainly to lighten/thin the batter somewhat so the latter two can better incorporate and fluff up the mixture.

                While all of this has been going on, you should at one point get a pan of water boiling; pour this into a baking pan large enough to set your Springform (or other round cake pan) into, about an inch high or less. This will not only help to regulate the heat in contact with the cake, so one doesn’t have to worry about “hot spots” in the oven, as well as keeping a bit of moisture while cooking. It is VERY important one has hot water in it before putting in the oven, otherwise it’ll take a long time to heat up to oven temp and disturb cooking time.

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                  Quickly add the filled pan and move to a 300F degree oven for about an hour. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT OPEN THE OVEN until it is done cooking! And even then, I would suggest just turning off the oven light and cracking the door a little to allow for a slooowwww cooling. One of the main issues related to the “cracking surface” effect of cheesecake baking, besides over-cooking and some other issues, lies in the exposing of cool(er) air when in the hot oven. So stick to an hour, or 1½ – 2 hours if you have multiple cakes in the oven (like I did) or it’s really thick (I think I was supposed to use the largest pan vs the medium-sized…), and turn the oven light on to make sure it’s browned a bit on the sides.

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                 If you HAVE to check, do it quickly and carefully, and just quick shake the pan to see if the center is set. Toothpick doesn’t really work, since you’ll have stuff stick even when it’s done; though how much and its viscosity depends on stage of cooking.

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                 Take out, run a knife around the edge, let cool some more and unmold. One can slice a piece now if you want (it’s not too bad warm, though I found mine a touch “spongy,” think maybe it overcooked a tad) or stick in the fridge an hour or so to get that denser New York treat. As I said, I love this recipe, as it yields a rich, creamy affair in a much lighter and “fluffy” package, making a slice of pie one can fully enjoy eating with every bite.

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                    For those who want to add fruit or other flavors to your cheesecake, but can’t find or aren’t sure about other recipes, there’s a fun little trick I learned in school. Get or make a rich, flavorful puree or sauce of some sort: for instance, we made one with raspberries.

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                    Separate a little bit of batter from your mix, say ¼cup or more, and mix with the puree. Then, once done, drizzle and swirl this over the top of the cheesecake batter after initially filling the pan. You can even try doing some layers as you pour for more integration! I would suggest doing this with a whole cake though; I did this with half just so I had pics for the post, but since I had to be careful with crossing I only ended up using a little bit of the puree.

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                  Now that we have a whole cooled cheesecake all to ourselves, we can ponder the various ways to enjoy it. Sliced, frozen, chopped up and mixed with fruit… or turned into little Chocolate Pops.

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                   Cut whatever amount of cheesecake you want into thick cubes, rectangles, or whatever shape you desire (cleaning the knife with a warm, wet cloth after each slice); just make sure it’s thick and sturdy enough to hold together. Stick a toothpick or other holdable in one end for easy management, and prepare your chocolate.

                   There are a lot of recipes for chocolate glazes out there, and truth be told most of them are probably better than this, the problem is it’s hard to tell which ones will actually set up to make a “shell” of some sorts once cool and which will just stay on as a thick sauce. If you want, you can actually just melt chocolate as-is, especially if it’s a good quality one to use, just remember a few little things.

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                  First, as always, do this gently over a double boiler.

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                  Second, do not melt the chocolate all the way over heat. Melt about 2/3rds – 3/4ths of it, take it off and let melt the rest of the way. I would love to tell you all about the Tempering Process, a technique where one melts the chocolate to a certain temperature, then cools it back down to another (usually through the aid of a marble slab, adding more chocolate, or other means), and then raising it back up to a third before using, thus setting the “crystals” in the chocolate to a perfect ratio so it cools to a shiny and perfectly crisp state (which doesn’t melt when you touch it). But you really need good temperature reading equipment and it’s still a tricky pain in the ass. So at least this almost-complete melting process keeps it from cooking too high and can cool back to a state similar to how it was before.

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                  And Third; I suggest you use either White or Dark chocolate when coating. With my experience, every time I’ve tried melting simple Milk Chocolate, and I’m not sure why, but it’s always much thicker and harder to manage than a higher cocoa% Dark (probably less cocoa butter and more lactic compounds or something).

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                   Another thing to try, and right now I can only have this as a suggestion because, for the life of me I don’t know why, but I can’t find a recipe that backs this up. I know people do this, I could have sworn I’ve seen simple recipes for it with the proper ratios, but I just couldn’t find any myself recently. Either way, adding a little bit of Oil to the chocolate as or after it’s melting helps not only gloss it up but get it to a better glaze consistency. And if you use oils like Olive or Coconut or etc, can add some extra flavor notes to the final mix.

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                 Once melted, quickly and carefully dip your cheesecake pieces in. This is much easier if you have a DEEP bowl of chocolate so you can make a single, simple, even coat over the entire thing, as opposed to trying to fumble all four sides into the small amount you already have. Or, if you don’t mind spending the time in cleaning, lay the cheesecake over a wire cooling rack (which is over a parchment-covered pan) and pour the glaze over, letting it drip a bit before turning over and pouring on the other side.

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                   Transfer to a parchment-lined pan, let cool a bit. If you haven’t done the cooling rack thing, maybe transfer them to ANOTHER parchment pan after those little chocolate squares from excess drippage forms. At this point, one could also sprinkle on little flavor additions if you like spicing it up a bit; I myself added a little of that leftover, spiced graham cracker mix I had baked earlier.

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                    Move to a fridge to ensure complete setting and enjoy whenever you like. Whether you get a perfect chocolate shell or not, it tastes reeeeeaaaallllyyyy good with that fresh creamy center, and a little bit of the crunchy, spicy cracker crumble to punch up the flavor.

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Damn that was a long post for me… no wonder I put off a week in actually trying to type it out. Well, hope you enjoyed some of it despite my many meaningless ramblings! Good Luck in your own cheesecake experiments, hopefully they aren’t as long and annoying as this explanation of my own. Good Eating to all, don’t be afraid to comment on your own experiences.

Kabomelette

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http://www.kabomeletteminneapolis.com/  

https://twitter.com/kabomelette  

Main Location: Minneapolis, Mornings + Lunch

             With a name reminiscent of what might happen if Wile E Coyote got his hands on the Road Runner’s eggs, Kabomelette premiered on the morning streets with much curiosity. As the second Truck this season to come out with highlighted breakfast focus, I was happily able to swing my first visit (again, another truck this season I’ve needed 2 visits to get down…) by on the same day of checking out Paulette’s.

            As the name ACTUALLY suggests, Kabom offers up two main “specialties” (on my first visit this depended on when you got there; one “menu” for breakfast and one for lunch. Though the recent menu has shown no requirement for time, thus assuming an all-day option… unlike McDonalds), so our inner Pyro’s have to sadly throw away the hopeful thoughts of dynamite and destruction. Omelette“s” and other breakfast items fit one side, while the other is taken up by variously flavored Kabobs, such as Jerk, Satay, Curry, even Caprese Salad. Between the two, they’ve also made the decision to offer quality coffee and some sandwich options.

            Ups and Downs aplenty to fill my experience, can’t think of what else I want to say without going to my ratings. So let’s dive in shall we?

 

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Food: 5

             Omelette is of the simple flat and fold-over style, made with 3 eggs. I think it’s funny that, despite the fact it’s the main part of their name, they really only offer one kind on the menu. They’ll argue that they have multiple, but it all revolves around bacon-peppers-onion-zuchini-cheese; you can either get chorizo instead of bacon, a “Vegan” that just doesn’t have the meat, or another one that just doesn’t have the veggies. As for how the fillings turn out, they are… average. Big chunks of vegetables were sautéed at one point, then put on top of egg and folded. Nothing bad to it, but nothing that makes it stand out; which is very sad for one of their namesakes.

             On my second visit, I got myself the “Chicken Satay;” I was going to get 2 kabobs actually, but… well, I’ll explain that later. To my disappointment, these skewers aren’t actually grilled to order; all of it is cooked and assembled ahead of time, then placed on a bed of rice with their sauce. Despite this, though, the chicken was surprisingly tender and soft, a really nice texture and flavor; speaking of which, I VERY much enjoyed the somewhat-spicy Peanut Sauce. If it’s any indication, I’m sure one can be confident in the flavor and quality of the sauces used on the skewers.

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             A couple things though. First, see this picture above? That’s what they serve for their Thai Chicken “Satay;” I put quotes around it because, for anyone who knows, THAT is not a Satay, it’s a Kabob. Satays are thin slices of meat woven onto a skewer with NOTHING else and grilled as-is (like Yakitori I believe); they are NOT layered in thick chunks with similarly thick-chunked veggies. Now, if the menu said “Chicken Satay Kabob,” then that’d be fine, but it didn’t; in fact, it said “Thai Chicken Satay,” actually indicating that it should have been THAI style; which again looks nothing like our version of Kabobs. And they only gave 3 pieces of chicken for all those vegetables.

              And as for the vegetables themselves, again there was nothing special of them. They were cooked as minimally as needed, had some weird hanging peppers, and just didn’t leave anything to impress me with. But the real oddity here is not the cooking and skewering, but the vegetables themselves; if one actually reads through the menu at every menu (outside the Caprese) you’ll see it immediately. Every single dish (breakfast or non) that uses veggies always uses Green Peppers, Onions, and Zucchini; nothing more, nothing less. Am I the only one who thinks this is sorta weird? I mean hey, the “why not” idea is there, but does it not just create a feeling of banality reminiscent of the boring Diner down the road?

             Maybe it’s just me.

             As for the sandwich items, I personally don’t care how good they are; so many other trucks serve them, and the draw to this particular one focuses completely around their Kabobs and Omelette“s.” And sadly, neither of these really live up that much to expectations.

Holdability: 6

              So disappointing. I was so excited at the idea of focusing their menu around one the iconic “On a Stick” food, the one thing I could be guaranteed to carry around in one hand wherever I want and chow down (well, that and a Corn Dog… which reminds me, we need a specialty Corn Dog Truck… someone get on it!!), and what do they do? Put it in a basket with rice.

             I’d pound my head against the wall if I wasn’t so lazy… and if it didn’t hurt so much. It may not be that difficult to eat, about the same as most places in baskets, but I’m taking off extra points here. They have a very clear and very easy route to a food item that’s absolutely perfect Holding while walking, and they just go ahead and do this…

             As for the omelette, in a basket as one expects, and not all that messy to eat.

Price: 6

             A very interesting phenomenon happened between my two visits. On my first exploration, I saw a very interesting and appealing Menu which looked like this:

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             A few options, very focused on the Kabobs and breakfast (if only having one omelette), and some VERY nice prices; if I had the time to stick around for lunch that day I would grabbed two skewers! My excitement, however, was soon to depart when I came back about a week later to this:

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             Interesting, isn’t it? It’s amazing how almost all the same items other than the Sandwich and Hash have increased in price; yet, at the same time, no additions had been made (I actually THOUGHT the rice with the Kabobs was new, but after looking back I was wrong! No Change!). What’s even more interesting is how, despite the attempted “diversification” of the omelettes, the actual Works (with everything) has no price difference than the other two (one with no meat, the other with only two bare items); not that the difference should be huge, but at least 50cents to better identify.

             Then we get to the Kabobs, which are basically just a pile of rice and cheap vegetables with only a bare few pieces of meat. I personally don’t see the actual justification for its given price now. What they need to do is get those prices back down, add one more piece of meat, and get rid of that rice so we have a nice, cheaper, handheld skewer of tastiness we can walk around with.

             Oh, guess I should list the final prices for those who can’t or are having problems seeing the picture. Breakfast items hang at $5, with $6 for their Hash and most Kabobs; lunch Sandwiches and “higher-end” Kabobs get set at $8. Overall, it’s still some pretty good prices (when simply compared to other menus), but I’m not sure it’s justified for the very simple, very low-costing products.

Speed: 9

             Quickness in service seems to be one of their main goals. As mentioned earlier, all Kabobs seem to be completely cooked and assembled beforehand, only needing an extra squirting of sauce and placing on a bed of rice or whatever. Omelette’s are cooked to order, though, and offer an expected couple minutes wait. Not sure if they cook meat for the sandwiches any further once ordered, though my guess is probably No if going off their mission statement.

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The TOE: 4

              I think it’s clear that there are quite a few things that stand out on the non-positive side here. The potentially-portable Kabobs are segregated to a rice-filled cell, prices have actually INCREASED, the actual quality of their specializations are only a bit over average; even their cart sorta looks like it came out of one of those random, average start-up diners. Though the name is interesting and they certainly help with the recent movements towards a Truck-focused Breakfast Scene, many of their decisions since opening have twisted what could have been some great impressions for the experience.

             Speaking of the name, I have one last issue I find highly jilted on. After reading their name, as well as a few little descriptions about the place, I’m sure my mind wasn’t the only one which got the idea that their truck was actually gonna focus on a new “Fusion” item of a Kabob wrapped in an Omelette (or something like it). One can imagine my immense disappointment, then, when I came only to see that they keep the two items separate; and they only have one actual omelette. Now, if this was a Restaurant, I wouldn’t bring it up; I mean hey, if there was a restaurant named this, where they had like 6 omelette’s and a whole list of skewers, it’d make sense.

            But the fact is, as I’ve said with other review, THIS IS NOT A RESTAURANT; it is a Food Truck. And one of the best aspects of this world is its wondrous realms of Creation and Fusion that just naturally seems to develop. So much so that, not only is the Fusion of items common, but it can be EXPECTED; and with the name Kabomelettes, it was highly expected. Especially with how easy it would be to actually make and how much sense it is; wrap an egg around a kabob like a lettuce wrap around a satay, and walk around with a paper-enshrouded skewer to enjoy your new food conquest. And to not deliver on this silent promise just creates a sever decrease in the potential experience us Foodies and Customers look for.

            Ultimately, if they can get rid of the Rice, nix the Sandwiches, add some more meat to the Skewers (and reword the name on the Satay), REALLY diversify their Omelettes, and maybe try at least one signature “Kabomelette,” and they really could be something great. Until then… –sighs- will just have to be here for the breakfast and quick-to-eat crowd.

                       Tally: 30/50

                       

Final Thoughts

            So far, I find Kabomelette’s to only fit 2 situations for going: for those wanting an egg-based breakfast from a Truck, and when looking for quick lunches.

            If one does end up going, my menu item suggestions are this. Jerk Chicken if looking for a Kabob, Fried Egg Sandwich if wanting Breakfast (the Roll is homemade, and I just don’t think the omelette’s are special enough to justify going to a truck for it; can find similar or better in many other places), and avoid the Sandwiches (I just don’t see the need to get one here as opposed to other trucks which BASE their menu around them).

            Hopefully changes are made and future experiences can prove all this wrong.