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Mercado: Striking Space and Mexican Fare Flavors

August 20, 2014 9:02 am

Mercado offers classic and contemporary Mexican cuisine to LA diners. Mercado boasts an impressive and expansive indoor space to the tune of 6,200 square feet. Equally striking is the enormous street-facing window with sweeping views of the bustling neighborhood.

Of course, the other main draw is the cuisine. Restaurateur Jesse Gomez and chef partner Jose Acevedo pay homage to their Mexican roots through favorite signature dishes like carnitas — Chef Jose’s slow-cooked natural pork matched with guacamole, chile de arbol salsa, cauliflower, and escabeche. For seafood, try the pumpkin-seed encrusted jumbo deep sea scallops with chipotle-peppercorn sauce. There are also daily specials featuring fresh, seasonal ingredients available at local farmer’s markets. Don’t miss the flan if you saved room for dessert; it gets rave reviews. Sip a cool cocktail like the margarita de Jamaica with hibiscus-infused reposada tequila. Come enjoy Mercado any night for dinner or Sundays for brunch.

Mercado
7910 West Third Street
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 944-0947
http://www.mercadorestaurant.com/los-angeles/index.php
http://www.yelp.com/biz/mercado-santa-monica

Category: Dining Tags: , ,


Pasta Goes Low-Carb in These Grain-Free Pasta Recipes

August 13, 2014 9:01 am

Pasta is filling and convenient on nights when you have little time to make dinner, but it can also take quite a toll on your waistline. There are ways to still enjoy the hearty, flavorful taste of pasta without all the carbs, but it does takes a bit of creative thinking in the kitchen. Here are four grain-free pasta recipes that both you and your diet will love!

Easy Spaghetti Squash Pasta
Spaghetti squash is a very popular alternative to spaghetti because it already looks just like the staple pasta. Just place a whole spaghetti squash in the oven and after an hour, the inside will turn into long, stringy strands, just like the real deal. Dress it up with marinara sauce or eat the buttery “noodles” plain with a bit of salt and pepper.

Zucchini Pasta Pesto
This recipe involves stripping a whole zucchini into the shape of long, spaghetti-like noodle shapes, then dousing the whole dish in a flavorful basil pesto sauce. It’s gluten-free, dairy free, and completely delicious.

Paleo “Ravioli”
Whether you adhere to a Paleo diet or not, this recipe for pasta-less ravioli is a truly tasty (and healthy) substitution for the original. Thin strips of squash make up the exterior of each ravioli, and a unique, creamy filling made of spinach and mascarpone cheese is stuffed inside.

Supreme Pizza Pasta
Don’t let the naughty name fool you: there’s nothing unhealthy about this slimmed-down, grain-free pasta. Yellow squash “noodles” make up the base, while lean chicken sausage, simple tomato sauce, and a whole variety of Italian veggies, herbs, and spices add a zesty Italian flavor.

Category: Miscellaneous Tags: , , ,


Aladdin’s Coffee Shop: A Landmark Coffee Shop

August 6, 2014 9:02 am

This local landmark has been a favorite of Los Angeles locals for over 30 years, so you know it has to be doing something right. Established in 1982, the restaurant serves a mix of global fare that tantalizes palates at reasonable prices. The restaurant is in an unassuming space, but the food options here are what bring diners back.

The entire menu earns praise from regulars, and some popular options include the awesome burritos, overstuffed with amazing ingredients and insanely cheap. The orrange chicken is said to be a treat, moist and tender with a citrus kick. The pupusas are well-regarded, and at just $2 a pop are a great way to have a cheap meal.

Aladdin’s is cash only, so stop at an ATM on the way there.

Aladdin’s Coffee Shop
1150 S. Hope Street
Los Angeles, CA 90015
(213) 747-4032
http://www.yelp.com/biz/aladdins-coffee-shop-los-angeles

Category: Dining Tags: , , ,