Cafe Calacas sits on a quaint corner across the street from The Ronald Reagan Federal Building in the Historic Arts District of Downtown Santa Ana, surrounded by the city’s historic Art Deco-era style architecture. However, just by looking at the traditional, Dia de Los Muertos-themed storefront, you wouldn’t be able to tell how far the quaint eatery is pushing the limits of traditional Mexican cuisine.
Even though there’s still a few weeks left in the year, Cafe Calacas’ strawberry guilallo salsa topped, bacon-wrapped breakfast burrito takes the prize for the best breakfast burrito of 2016.
Starting with their El Famoso Breakfast Burrito, which is served with your choice of ham, bacon or sausage, Calacas neatly wraps the El Famoso in a brown sugar and syrup glazed-bacon and grills the it to perfection.
To top it off, a nice thick layer of Cafe Calacas’ strawberry guilallo salsa and guacamole are added. If your mouth isn’t watering yet, it should be.
Currently, the strawberry guilallo salsa topped, bacon-wrapped breakfast burrito is only available at the cafe during brunch time once a week, on Sundays. Should be plenty of time for you to mark your calendars to take on this champ of a burrito.
Global warming aside, 2016 was a pretty hot year. To clarify, it’s been a pretty spicy year. We’ve witnessed a huge surge in the spicy foods trend recently and couldn’t be happier to see people appreciating the heat.
There’s nothing like a peppery plate to get your sweat glands going and your senses on high-alert. Let’s take a look at what’s been happening these last 12 months.
Hot Cheetos Everywhere
Everyone and their mothers have been using Hot Cheetos as a secret ingredient in their recipes this year. Actually, the fiery corn snack has been in the spotlight for a couple of years now, but they’re still going strong. Arguably the hottest and easiest to find of commercial chips, these pepper dusted snacks are the guilty pleasure treats to many patrons.
You can pretty much toss these crimson corn puffs on anything and it’ll be considered trendy. Case in point:
A pretty sizable amount of YouTube videos and Facebook Live Streams have featured some form of spicy food challenge this year.
We even got fellow Foodbeast Elie to try FOUR Carolina Reaper Chips from Paqui. The fiery pepper-encrusted snack food is so spicy that it only comes in a serving of one. It also doesn’t help that the packaging is in the shape of a coffin.
Spicy food challeneges weren’t limited to chips though. In fact, many spots had their own champion in the world of heat.
Heck, even the hand-roll spot down the street from our office has a mega-spicy tuna roll for the bravest of patrons. According to Reach, however, it was nowhere near as hot as the Ddukbokki.
Nashville Hot Chicken
Nashville hot chicken started off as a Tennessee staple. The iconic dish was rumored to have been created in the 1930s as a means of revenge on a womanizer who was expecting a breakfast of fried chicken. What the man didn’t expect was that it was cooked with extra hot pepper, which he was shockingly delighted by.
The dish itself features cuts of chicken marinated in a liquid-based (water or buttermilk) blend of seasoning that’s fried, floured, and bearded. Once it’s out of the fryer, a sauce featuring cayenne pepper is added to the piping hot chicken and served with pickle chips and slices of white bread.
Now, hot chicken has commercially spread across the states and folks are LOVING it (myself included). Even fast food spots like Kentucky Fried Chicken and Carl’s Jr began serving Nashville Hot Chicken and Nashville Hot Chicken sandwiches, pickle chips and all.
For those who aren’t down for fast food imitations – though KFC’s version is pretty damn tasty – hit up Howlin’ Ray’s (for those in the Los Angeles area), which usually boasts an hour-long line if you’re lucky.
If you’re fortunate enough to live in Nashville, you probably have a better idea where to get your hands on some quality hot chicken.
Why So Spicy?
There could be a number of reasons why spicy foods have been on the up and up this year. People’s palates have possibly grown accustomed to the heat and are eager to test their boundaries with every new “hot” dish they try.
What’s more, spicy foods are a way for eaters to come together and socialize over the idea of trying something scary and exciting. The adrenaline rush of not knowing how your body will handle the heat can be exhilarating for some people, while others will just succumb to peer pressure just to be a part of the culture.
The pride of being able to handle spicy dishes better than your friends can also play a major role in why “spicy challenges” are trending more and more. Sometimes, it’s just nice to know you can take the heat better than your colleagues.
Weekend 1 at Coachella has finally come and gone, at the blink of an eye for the people who went, but seemingly over the course of a month for the people forced to look at pictures and videos because they couldn’t go.
While there were a staggering 3.8 million tweets about Coachella over the 3-day weekend, they weren’t all about how Kanye showed up and did nothing, or about Ke$ha showing up to perform with Zedd and rocking everyone’s faces off. In fact, a lot of tweets were about the food! These are the top 10 words tweeted about Coachella food.
“Vegan” – A large majority of the vendors this year were vegan-based, so this makes sense.
“Watermelon” – Sounds weird, but walking around in the heat all day then seeing someone dive into a huge slice of watermelon will bring out the crazy jealous person in you. It did for me.
“Brunch” – Honestly, breakfast/brunch is about the only time people eat, since they spend the rest of the day rolling and drinking and snorting. This makes very much sense.
“Dinner” – I assume this comes mostly from the Rose Garden, a VIP establishment that costs an extra $600 to attend, but provides the finer things like 14-course meals and actual chairs to sit on.
“Pizza” -The easiest meal by far to walk around with, it comes as no surprise that pizza was a hit, considering how much walking everyone had to do every day to go from tent to tent.
“Cheese” -See “Pizza”
“Water” – The heatwaves beating from the sun all day were brutal, especially the hard partiers that couldn’t wait til nighttime to do their drugs or take their shots. Water was key to success, and unlike DJ Khaled’s paranoid preachings, they DID want us to have water. You know, to survive and whatever.”
“Grilled” – While many food items were grilled, I personally believe the vendors from the Grilled Cheese Truck were the cause of this trend, selling over 15,000 freshly made grilled cheese sandwiches to all the festival attendees.
“Breakfast” – By far the most important meal at Coachella, breakfast is the only reason anybody was able to party on the second and third days. I assume many tweets were something along the lines of, “Thank God I ate #breakfast this morning or else I’d be dying. Now time for shots and Disclosure!”
“Lunch” – Of course, if breakfast, brunch and dinner all make the cut, it likely comes as no surprise that lunch found its way onto this list. I mean, we all talk about food all the time anyways, I wouldn’t have been surprised if this made the list for top 10 most tweeted words ever!
So what do you think? Are you guilty of one of these tweets?