Saturday, July 21, 2012

Regional Eats: Chef Mobil Restaurant - Aguada, Puerto Rico

It feels like years since my last visit to the land of the great valiant and the noble lords. Puerto Rico, or the "Island of Enchantment" is notoriously known for it's diverse cuisine which has its roots in the cooking traditions and practices of Europe (Spain), Africa and the “TaĆ­nos” Indians.

Many people believe Puerto Rico is the home of the food truck phenomenon, since they have been around for decades, and have become a culinary staple among local residents.

During my visit to Ramey Air Force Base in Aguadilla, my brother knowing I am a hardcore foodie, took me to Chef Mobil Restaurant, a food truck located at the Carrizal “barrio” in Aguada, PR. This food truck specializes in authentic Puerto Rican cuisine.

I ordered the most traditional thing on the menu, mofongo, broth, and “chicharrones de pollo” or deep fried chicken. Mofongo, the signature dish of Puerto Rico, is an extremely tasty and filling dish made with fried plantains that are later mashed with garlic and shaped into a ball. If you ever come to Puerto Rico you must NOT leave without trying one.

We also ordered "Asopao de Pollo" which is our version of chicken and rice stew. This soup was served with a thicker cut plantains for dipping in the broth. The "Asopao de Pollo" is almost like a a cross between soup and a paella. This "soup" is a favorite rainy day comfort food among my family members. My grandmother always takes pride on her "asopao", and she always say that's says her "asopao" has the fantastic ability to resurrect the dead.

"Carne frita" or fried pork chunks was my grandfather favorite thing to eat. This simple yet incredulous delicious dish is deep fried until crispy tender and is usually served with Puerto Rican sauce (mayo, ketchup and garlic) or a garlic mojito.

If  you ever visit the northwest corner which is home to some of the greatest surf beach on the island make sure you stop by this tiny food truck. It will not only leave you incredibly satisfied but will leave you wanting for more.

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