I first heard about the Breed Street Food Fair, a collection of Mexican street stands in Boyle Heights, back in 2007 when Abby of Pleasure Palate uploaded pictures of her visit on Biggest Menu. She was introduced to it by Street Gourmet LA, who stumbled upon the lively scene while scouting out new places.
Gorditas made by splitting a handmade tortilla topped with a pumpkin and sesame seed mixture, I had never seen the like before and definitely wanted to try. I didn't get a chance to do so though until June 2009, and then I returned a couple of days later, and the week after that, and the week after that.
Squash blossoms, corn fungus, and fried chicken necks. Sure I've made Squash Blossom Quesadillas, and I've heard of huitlacoche (Mexican corn smut) before, but didn't know of where I could get some. And not only could I get both here, but deep-fried chicken necks and freshly fried churros too. Yum!
The first few times I went was with @Meowmi, whom I met on BiggestMenu. She told her friends about it and two nights later, we were back again.
Nina's Food Catering, sort of the anchor for all the other food stands, occupied the biggest space in the parking lot. Gorditas, quesadillas, sopes, and huaraches, basically stuffed or topped.
Fresh masa for making the above-mentioned dishes.
Flor de la calabaza (Mexican squash blossoms).
Huitlacoche. Corn smut is actually a fungus that grows on the kernels. I'm not sure how the huitlacoche tastes unprepared, but this mixture was tangy and slightly sour, sort of lightly fermented tasting.
Huarache, is a shoe-shaped corn dough, with toppings.
The peanut, sesame and pumpkin seed, and chile mixture.
When he makes the quesadilla, he piles the filling on top and folds over the dough. I got a mixture of squash blossoms and huitlacoche.
Side view so you can see the inside.
On another visit, I got the gordita, which he split in half and stuffed.
But to really experience these dishes, you have to watch this YouTube video and see him make everything in action. The patting of the dough, the filling, the frying, pictures just don't do it justice.
Guess which dishes we hit up at this stand?
Menudo! I kinda went crazy with the oregano and chile toppings.
You know what menudo is, right? Tripe! Yum! Don't worry, I didn't eat this huge container by myself.
The stand also had goat tacos. Very moist.
And deep-fried chicken necks!
My brother loves chicken necks, or any poultry neck really. So one night when he asked what I wanted to grab for dinner, I mentioned the fried chicken necks and we were so there.
Some other stands featured pambazo (Mexican dipped bread).
Some kind of mole dish.
And lastly, for dessert, my favorite is the churro stand.
As the churro comes out of the tube, he pinches off a section.
And then sets it aside after frying.
Cinnamon and sugar is added when I want an order. Fresh hot churros in a bag for only $1!
I remember once, coming back from dinner with lil' sis and the oldest '87, in which I couldn't find parking, so I idled the car while they ran out to grab some churros to-go.
Unfortunately, the Breed Street Food Fair became a victim of its own success. Because the sellers were unlicensed, the police have shut them down. Everyone has scattered and people have tried to set up nearby, or at random locations in the area, but it just wasn't the same.
Read Abby of Pleasure Palate who told me about it and Bill of Street Gourmet LA, who discovered the Breed Street scene and told everyone else.
Other Mexican restaurants:
Carnitas Michoacan - Los Angeles (Lincoln Heights)
Chichen Itza Restaurant - Los Angeles
Cook's Tortas - Monterey Park
Gabbi's Mexican Kitchen - Orange
King Taco Restaurants #11 - El Monte (Garvey Ave.)
Los Cinco Puntos - Los Angeles
Old Town Mexican Cafe and Cantina - San Diego
Senor Fish - Alhambra
Tacos Baja Ensenada - (East) Los Angeles
Taqueria Chihuahua - Los Angeles (Mar Vista)
Breed Street Food Fair
In the public parking lot on the corner of Breed Street and Cesar Chavez Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90033
Thursday to Sunday 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Nina's Food Catering
1 year ago today, Cocary Shabu Shabu BBQ - Monterey Park.
2 years ago today, Chicken Pot Pie with Cilantro Biscuits.