LEMON POPPY KITCHEN

Today’s post goes a bit off the beaten path. Lemon Poppy Kitchen is located in a Glassell Park strip mall in an old Bakery space. 

There are only a few tables inside so I would try to make your trip here on a weekday or bring your patience. They cut the formalities with ordering-at-the-counter format, so that minimizes the wait a good bit! I love the bright and cheery colors inside paired with the equally as bold vintage furniture.

I ordered one of the breakfast specials–a toasted baguette sandwich with egg, whole roasted tomatoes, gruyere cheese, and red pepper aioli. So delicious. I recommend getting a little extra aioli on the side for dipping.

Yet another breakfast, conquered.

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DELMY PUPUSAS

One of my absolute favorite places to be is at a Farmer’s Market. My favorite local market is the Atwater Village Farmer’s Market. I have been going to this particular market every Sunday, rain or shine, for more than three years. Out of a thousand perfect reasons to go to this market is Delmy Pupusas. I have been known to arrange weekend trips for a Sunday return early enough to allow a trip to get one.

Named in her mother’s honor, Ruth runs the Atwater, Silverlake, and Echo Park “branches” of the family’s business. Her mother and brother take their versions of the Savadoran treat to Torrance, Hollywood, and Pershing Square markets to name a few.

A pupusa is a Salvadoran dish made of masa (a ground corn dough) that is traditionally stuffed with a mix of cooked pork, beans, and cheese. The pupusa is cooked on a flat grill and served with a vinegar cabbage slaw and salsa. Ruth’s pupusas are nothing like any pupusa you may have had. I have always found traditional recipes to be quite greasy and heavy. Ruth’s on the other hand are light and fresh and come with a wide variety of filling options vs. the traditional and often limited (and meat heavy!) choices. My absolute favorite pupusa is the Vegetable and Cheese. Ruth uses ten different vegetables in her recipe and the blend is mixed with monterey jack cheese. The balance of cheese to vegetable is just perfect. Never too much cheese–always just the right amount to create a creamy filling that lets the fresh vegetables shine.

Once the pupusas are grilled to perfection (I always get mine extra crispy), they are topped. First, a healthy serving of the cabbage slaw (Ruth adds cucumbers to her slaw, which just make it), next a delicious salsa (on my plate, more salsa than is probably normal to eat in one sitting), and finally a dollop of sour cream. 

As wonderful as the vegetable and cheese pupusa is on its own (very wonderful) it is even better paired with a bean and cheese one. The smooth creamy texture perfectly contrasts with the texture of the vegetables of its mate. Oh, and make sure you get a jalapeño on your plate.

Just in case there isn’t enough deliciousness here for you, add one of Ruth’s eight homemade juices (fresh coconut water, green juice, raspberry lemonade, cucumber lemonade, to name a few).

My favorite local dish beats yours!

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