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The LA Spot Where You Can Grill Your Own Filipino Street Food Favorites

There’s something to be said when you catch a vibe from cooking your own food in a setting that’s normally not in your own kitchen. You can find that simple pleasure when barbecuing, campfire cooking, and even sitting down to a Korean bbq meal. But a spot in Los Angeles’ Historic Filipinotown called Dollar Hits is adding its name to that list, by channeling the energy of Filipino street food and letting diners cook it themselves on grills out doors.

Step inside and you’re greeted with a wide array of Filipino street food options. Imagine heaping stacks of meat skewers ranging from traditional pork and chicken barbecue, to other favorites like fish balls, pork and chicken intestines (isaw), chicken feet (adidas), chicken head (helmet), pig ears (walkman), chicken hearts, quail egg (kwek kwek), and more.

After picking your lot to grill, simply step outside to three outdoor grills and cook your choices to taste. As far as dining experiences go in LA, Dollar Hits is quite memorable as there’s not many like it in the city.

With outdoor dining being the norm these days, Dollar Hits should serve as a great choice to add to one’s list of spots to safely eat out at, all while catching the whole Filipino street food vibe that many have yet to experience.

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Recipes Video

Elote Ramen Is The At-Home Instant Ramen Recipe Everyone Needs To Try

Instant Ramen is probably one of the easiest at-home foods to make because it lends itself to so many versatile upgrades that you really can’t go wrong eating it with some accouterments or simply on its own.

The Foodbeast team got together and came up with their own personal ways of cooking up instant ramen at home. Probably the coolest of the batch, if I was the sole judge, is this Elote Ramen made by our very own Oscar Gonzalez.

Using a container of Cup Noodles, Oscar combined the hearty flavors of instant ramen with the bold zest of Mexican street corn. Taking some canned corn, shredded cheese, milk, lime juice, hot sauce and Tajin, he wove together a masterpiece of instant noodles and elote.

Honorable mention also goes to Foodbeast Chris who ground up his Top Ramen into noodles, rolled them out, cut them back into noodles and cooked them. Super excessive, super delicious, and oddly soothing practice.

Rounding out the rest of the team, you can see how Costa made his Spicy Ramen Bake, Elie his Spicy Peanut Butter Pepper Ramen, and Marc‘s Cacio e Pepe Lemon Ramen. Those are seriously some mouthwatering recipes, I’d be down to try with some instant ramen.

Check out the video if you’re looking to enhance your instant ramen experience at home! What should the crew make next week, y’all?!

 

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Hit-Or-Miss

The Challenges Of Running A Successful Taco Stand In Los Angeles


Photo by Isai Rocha

We found ourselves at Tacos El Venado on a random Tuesday because of a 10-pound burrito that’s as tall as a 6-year-old. The So-Cal based burrito was right up Foodbeast’s alley — being insanely huge for no reason, and itching to go viral.

Angel Tamayo, the man behind the behemoth of a burrito, was damn near born to do this taco stand thing. In a city brimming with amazing taco joints, Tacos El Venado, whether in its Van Nuys truck or North Hollywood stand locations, will often have lines circling the block, while surrounding taco trucks watch and hope to get the stragglers who don’t want to wait in line.

El Venado’s success can be attributed to more than just the occasional stunt food, as Tamayo literally worked day and night to make sure his offerings stood out from the rest, while concurrently navigating through L.A.’s infamous street food bans.

“It’s an all-day job,” Tamayo said. “People think you can just wake up at 4 p.m., prep everything and go to work. It takes a lot of time, and you get little sleep.”

The anatomy of a taco stand is a lot more complex than you’d expect. It starts  with picking up the fresh meats from a carniceria, and with Tacos El Venado, that care needs to go into 11 different meat options.

Then you have to buy the produce, which often consists of white onions, red onions, radishes, lettuce, cilantro, limes, tomatoes, avocado, and different types of chiles to make up the salsas. You then need to make sure you have enough corn and flour tortillas for those tacos and burritos. You also need to pick up propane to power up the whole operation.

After you’ve crossed off all of those from your shopping list, there’s pre-prep, where you have to marinate and prep all those meats, begin blending up your salsas, setting up the stand itself, stationing the taco toppings, getting ready for hundreds of people to populate your stand, all while still trying to capture a specific flavor that’s special to Southern California.

Tamayo made a daily routine of getting up at 7 a.m., and putting in the love and care  necessary to put together a taco spot that stands out. He even noted there were countless nights he’d lose sleep and doze off behind the wheel, all to craft the dream of “making it,” and creating something successful from the ground up.

If you’re not familiar with street food in Los Angeles, there’s seemingly someone selling tacos, hot dogs, or elotes on every corner. While you’d assume this is just a norm, there is actually a very real daily risk that the health department will come through and shut down the whole operation.

It hasn’t been a very accepting climate, as opposed to other major cities in the U.S., like New York, where selling food on the sidewalk is not a legal issue.

There has been a major push with street vendors this year, though, as the L.A. City Council approved the plan to write a sidewalk vendor ordinance, putting the city one step closer to full decriminalization.

While it looks like the laws will soon change, at this moment, the fear still sits within the minds of all these Los Angeles vendors.

One of the biggest examples of this was in 2017, when one of L.A.’s most popular taco stands, Avenue 26, was subject to a random sweep by the health department, and had every single piece of cooking equipment stripped away. The LAPD took zero credit for that sweep. Hell, you can even routinely find police enjoying tacos from stands like this in Los Angeles, so the raid rested solely in the hands of the health department.

Tamayo admitted that he has had similar run ins with them in the past, but has recently built allies within the police department to give him a heads up when these kinds of sweeps are going to take place.

“They’ll come by here and there,” Tamayo said. “They’ll take everything, your grill, your meat, we don’t [get it back]. It sucks, bro.”

Tamayo has never let that stop him though, risking it all to make a living, fully knowing a health inspection sweep could cost him his entire stand setup, and feeling the challenge of starting his days at 7 a.m. and ending them at 1 a.m.

“I’m not where I want to be yet, but I’m doing pretty good,” Tamayo said. “It was a lot of hard work. A lot of time and effort. Remembering all those late nights, early mornings. It was a lot of work.”

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Now Trending Recipes Video

How To Make The Perfect Hainanese Style Chicken At Home [WATCH]

In some dishes, you can find ultimate perfection in the simplest of recipes that require amazing attention and skill. One of the quintessential examples of that is the Singaporean and Malaysian classic Hainanese style Chicken. Originally from the southern Chinese province of Hainan, this simple dish of chicken and rice is so good, you’ll be questioning the fact as to how you’re loving simple chicken and rice so much for years to come.

Despite its simplicity on paper, there’s actually a lot of detail that goes into the perfect Hainanese-style chicken. But thanks to thousands of online contributions and an expert on the dish, YouTube channel SORTEDfood has come up with a great recipe for you to make this treasured meal at home. The best part is that it’s incredibly simple, can be done on a budget, and tastes like a million bucks.

There’s a couple of key aspects to get right about the dish: you have to keep the recipe simple while loading the chicken with tons of flavor and ensure the chicken has a velvety texture and skin that feels almost silky. SORTED definitely hits all those marks, and while they’re definitely not experts from countries where this is made, they do an amazing job at getting the recipe as right as they possibly can.

It’ll take a long time to make this recipe, but thanks to the team at SORTED, you’ll have yourself a Hainanese chicken worthy of the street food carts of Singapore when you’re done.

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Adventures News Now Trending

Bangkok Cracks Down On Street Vendors Despite Being A Renowned Street Food Destination

CNN recently named Thailand’s capital, Bangkok, as the world’s top city for street food. It’s not hard to see why, with sidewalk vendors heavily populating the streets from breakfast to late night selling local favorites like fragrant rice with poached chicken, fried mussel pancakes, and phad thai noodles.

Sadly, it seems that Bangkok won’t be able to hold on to that honor for long, as the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) just announced that by the end of the year, these vendors would be banned from the city’s streets.

The Nation reports that the BMA came to this decision in an effort to “beautify Bangkok” and “reclaim the pavement for pedestrians.” The efforts have already begun, with Siam Square, Putanam, and a popular flea market already being cleared out, with internationally renowned areas like Yaowarat and Khao San Road the next targets of the administration.

Wanlop Sudanwee, the chief adviser to Bangkok’s governor, told the Nation that the street food stands in these areas were being run by “illegal vendors” and that there would be “no exceptions” to clearing out vendors in these areas.

“The street vendors have seized the pavement space for too long and we already provide them with space to sell food and other products legally in the market, so there will be no let-up in this operation. Every street vendor will have to move out.”

While some Thai citizens were caught off guard, one told the Nation that she agreed with the decision but would like to see a new area set up for these vendors. At least if that happened, they could continue to do business and sell their authentic fare to tourists and locals alike.

One thing’s for sure: if you were thinking of going to Thailand to check out the busy street food scene, I’d do it really soon. Otherwise, you may not get a chance to experience it for yourself once the crackdown is fully completed.

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News

Los Angeles Has FINALLY Decriminalized Street Vending

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Photo: KCET

Food street vendors are a common sight in cities across the nation. Selling everything from tamales and hot dogs to halal and ice cream, they’re more than just a convenient way to get food while on the go in populated areas. For the vendors, its often their primary source of income and how they aim to feed their families.

Up until today, Los Angeles was the only major American city to enforce criminal penalties for street vending, according to Fox 11 Los Angeles. That changed with a groundbreaking vote in the Los Angeles City Council Chambers earlier this afternoon.

ABC7 reports that an ordinance to decriminalize street vending in Los Angeles was passed by an overwhelming 11-2 vote, allowing for the creation of a program to regulate street vendors with permits enforced by fines and property seizure.

Councilman José Huizar, one of the original writers of the ordinance, voiced his support for its passage with a powerful statement:

“We cannot continue to allow an unregulated system that penalizes hard-working, mostly immigrant vendors with possible criminal misdemeanor charges, particularly in the current political environment. These people are not asking for a handout, they are asking for an opportunity to lift themselves up and provide for their families.”

Fortunately, thanks to the Los Angeles City Council, the 10,000 food vendors and 40,000 other vendors that sell their goods on the sidewalk now have the chance to make a living without facing criminal misdemeanor charges.

While the program to regulate street vending will take some time to develop and implement, a new ordinance that clears the Department of Public Works to issue street vendor permits will be written once those regulations are set in stone.

We will have to wait for truly legal street vending in LA for a little while longer, but this is a MASSIVE step forward in making our favorite street carts a legal and powerful presence in the LA food scene.

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#foodbeast

The bubble wrap of waffles

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Picthx Margie Tsai, Read about it here

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Video

Anthony Bourdain Talks “Street Food” on Letterman [VIDEO]

Currently on a press tour for his new show The Layover, Anthony Bourdain stopped by David Letterman’s Late Show to talk food, food television hate and the quality of street food in New York. Bourdain claims his 24-hour stay in Singapore on an episode of his new show revealed some of the best street food in the world, and that street food in New York will give you a mad case of the shits. Yes, stuff we may already know, but still interesting to hear coming from a “professional.”