Easy Roast Chicken Dinner

There is a show on Food Network where a lady layers ready made Jell-O cup filling with fruits and cookies to make makeshift trifles. Although we have never done this and cannot attest to how good it would taste, we like the concept of the show of mixing ready-made ingredients with cooking from scratch in order to make fast meals that don’t come straight from a box (only a little from a box).

For days when all you want to do is stop by Chipotle and get a burrito or order in pizza we have an alternate solution. Instead of Chipotle, stop by your local grocery store and pick up a rotisserie chicken, boxed mac and cheese, brussel sprouts, mushrooms and shallots. You’ll have a lovely meal in no time.

What we propose is serving the rotisserie chicken as is (the main part of the meal is completely ready), adding some mushroom bechamel sauce to your mac and cheese to kick it up a notch and then make a quick brussel sprout hash. Easy and delicious.

INGREDIENTS:

CHICKEN:
1 rotisserie chicken

Rotisserie Chicken

Rotisserie Chicken

MAC AND CHEESE:
1 box of mac and cheese mix (we like Trader Joe’s Organic White Cheddar Mac n Cheese)
1 cup of milk (heated)
1 sprig of thyme
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup of sliced mushrooms (we like baby portobello for this recipe, but feel free to use your favorite!)
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 cup of shredded sharp white Cheddar
Freshly ground black pepper
Pinch of nutmeg

Directions:
1. In a small pan, saute the mushrooms with the olive oil and thyme until brown (about 4-5 minutes). Season with salt and pepper
2. Melt the butter in a deep skillet over medium-high heat.
3. Whisk in the flour and cook for about 1 minute, stirring constantly, to keep lumps from forming.
4. Whisk the milk it into the butter and flour mixture.
5. Continue to whisk vigorously, and cook until the mixture is smooth.
6. Stir in the the cheese and continue to cook and stir to melt the cheese.
7. Add the mushrooms then season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg.
8. Prepare the boxed mac and cheese according to instructions.
9. Add the mushroom bechamel sauce to the prepared mac and cheese.

Mushroom White Cheddar Mac and Cheese

Mushroom White Cheddar Mac and Cheese

INGREDIENTS:

BRUSSEL SPROUT HASH WITH CARAMELIZED SHALLOTS:
3 tbsp butter, divided
1/2 pound shallots, thinly sliced
Coarse kosher salt
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
4 tsp sugar
1 1/2 pounds brussels sprouts, trimmed
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup water

Directions:
1. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in medium skillet over medium heat.
2. Add shallots; sprinkle with coarse kosher salt and pepper.
3. Sauté until soft and golden, about 10 minutes.
4. Add vinegar and sugar. Stir until brown and glazed, about 3 minutes.
5. Halve brussels sprouts lengthwise. Cut lengthwise into thin (1/8-inch) slices.
6. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.
7. Add sprouts; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté until brown at edges, 6 minutes.
8. Add 1 cup water and 1 tablespoon of butter.
9. Sauté until most of water evaporates and sprouts are tender but still bright green, 3 minutes.
10. Add shallots; season with salt and pepper.

Brussel Sprout Hash

Brussel Sprout Hash

Now just assemble everything together and you have dinner! It definitely still feels like a home cooked meal but without all the effort.

Dinner!

Dinner!

Mac and cheese sauce inspired by Tyler Florence’s Mac and Cheese Recipe
Brussel Sprout Hash recipe from epicurious

TIPS:
– The mac and cheese would also be wonderful with wild mushrooms and maybe a dash of truffle oil if you’re feeling fancy.
– We suggest you use mac and cheese that’s a tad nicer than the bright orange stuff, there are many boxed mac and cheese mixes that are tasty without using that many artificial ingredients.
– Other cheeses that would be good in the bechamel sauce are subbing some of the cheddar for mozzarella (for melty stretchiness) and maybe adding some parmesan for taste.
– Finding brussel sprouts that are already sliced thinly would make the brussel sprout hash prep quite speedy.

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Jayne’s Gastropub

Jayne’s came highly recommended from a friend and after leaving Polite Provisions we were hungry then what do you know…Jayne’s Gastropub was right there. On the corner of Adams and 30th. How convenient.

On the outside it looks like a simplified English pub. White building, dark green trim, and Jayne’s discreetly written on the front. Once you go inside its quite cozy with lots of dark wood. Its a smallish space with a smallish bar but the drinks sounded good and the place was packed, which is normally a good sign.

We wanted to sit at the bar and just order appetizers then bounce, we told the hostess this and she was quite gracious and said we could wait for a spot at the bar or sit at a table outside. We chose to sit outside and this was quite lucky because their outside patio is gorgeous.

Jayne's Gastropub Patio

Jayne’s Gastropub Patio

There are tall hedges surrounding the patio and then a tall wall with aged brick on one side. There are globe lights overhead and heaters to stay warm and the tables have white tableclothes and red roses. Its quite the charming place to have dinner and probably a perfect date spot.

White Linens and Red Roses at Jayne's

White linens and red roses at Jayne’s

APPETIZERS: We ordered two appetizers, the Gambas al Aljillo and the Calamari. The Gambas were shrimp in a spicy garlic sauce with sliced baguette bread. Though the shrimp were good, the sauce was somewhat lacking. The chilis and garlic didn’t have enough time to infuse in the oil, so the oil was relatively flavorless. It was a little pricey for 6 shrimp as well. The calamari on the other hand was great. It was served piping hot and had the perfect amount of breading. Sometimes you get too much cakey breading and its slipping off the calamari rings. Here it was crunchy but not greasy and you could tell it had just left the fryer. The calamari comes with cocktail sauce and aioli.

Gambas Al Aljillo

Gambas Al Aljillo

Calamari

Calamari

Overall, we thought the food could’ve been a tad cheaper but its hard to be upset when you’re dining in such a pleasant environment. Their menu also had some really great sounding dishes like their crostini with white bean puree and roasted peppers, the brick chicken and especially the gnocchi with cream, mushrooms, and chicken.

CHECK:
Calamari $10.50
Gambas al Aljillo $15.50
TOTAL: $38.88 (w/tax)

Their drinks sound good, their burger won best burger in SD at one point, and they have a $5 dollar happy hour plates special. Jayne’s: We will be back.

Another view of Jayne's patio

Another view of Jayne’s patio

Jayne’s Gastropub
4677 30th St
San Diego, CA 92116
http://jaynesgastropub.com

Asian Braised Pork Buns

Ever since we got our slow-cooker so many dishes that appeared too time consuming or labor intensive have become such easy weeknight staples. Instead of coming home and then having to braise something in a hot oven for 4 hours before eating it you can start the prep work at night, finish it in the morning, stick in the slow cooker and come back home to some delicious falling-off-the-bone tender main course. Not only that but braising for that long turns cheap cuts of meat into dinner party worthy fare. For everyone who comes home ravenous and/or exhausted from work the slow-cooker is your friend.

For this dish we took inspiration from the pork belly steamed buns at Momofuku Ssam Bar in New York. This dish involved super tender pork belly served with scallions and hoisin sauce on pillowy steamed buns. Pork belly is very rich and very fatty and we prefer something a little leaner and with more texture. This is why we decided to sub pork shoulder for pork belly and to add some more veggies on the side.

Asian Braised Pork Shoulder

Asian Braised Pork Shoulder

For this large portion of pork shoulder (easily serves 4) it cost us approximately $5.14. Another great money saving tip is to shop at ethnic grocery stores. Having to procure some Asian ingredients like chili oil, bok choy, and the sesame buns we went to 99 Ranch in Kearny Mesa. They recently re-did this so it’s a lot nicer and cleaner then it used to be. Not only do they have a wide variety of exotic fare they also have lots of cheap, fresh produce and very inexpensive meat. Now we wouldn’t recommend you get your filet mignon here but for cheaper cuts (like this pork shoulder) they have great deals and our meal was superb.

Asian Braised Pork Shoulder

INGREDIENTS:
1 boneless pork shoulder (3-4 lbs)
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup Lawry’s seasoning salt (you can use regular salt too)
5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 2 inch piece of ginger, grated
3 cups of chicken stock
1/4 cup of soy sauce
1/4 cup of rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup of oyster sauce
1/4 cup of brown sugar
4 tbsp of sambal oelek (you can use more or less depending how much spice you want or substitute Sriracha)

DIRECTIONS:
1. Trim skin and fat from pork shoulder as desired (we took off most of it)
2. Mix sugar and salt and then rub all over the pork shoulder
3. Cover pork in plastic wrap and leave in refrigerator overnight or for at least 6 hours. Place over plate in case any juices leak out.
4. Whisk together the garlic, ginger, chicken stock, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, oyster sauce, brown sugar and sambal oelek.
5. Cut the pork shoulder into 3 pieces and place in slow cooker. Pour in the soy sauce and spices mixture. Make sure some of the tops of the pieces of the pork shoulder remain uncovered by liquid, these will become the crispy bits.
6. Turn the slow cooker on low and let it cook for 8-9 hours.

To complement the pork we made this Momofuku inspired dressing:

Ginger-Scallion Sauce

Ginger-Scallion Sauce

Ginger-Scallion Sauce

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup thinly sliced scallions (green and whites, 3/4 of a large bunch)
1/4 cup finely minced fresh ginger
2 tbsp grapeseed or other neutral oil
1/4 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp chili oil
1/4 tsp kosher salt, more to taste

DIRECTIONS:
1. Mix together all the ingredients in a bowl. Taste and check for salt, adding more if needed.
2. Let sit for 15-20 minutes before using.

Because braised meats go so well with rice and bitter greens we decided to add sides of fried rice and bok choy, if you have leftover rice this is a cinch to make:

Brown Fried Rice

Brown Fried Rice

Bok Choy

Bok Choy

Simple Brown Fried Rice and Bok Choy

INGREDIENTS:
2 cups of leftover brown rice (already cooked, can also use white rice)
4 tbsp of virgin coconut oil (or vegetable oil)
2 eggs, beaten
2 tbsp light soy sauce
4 tbsp chopped scallions
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 tbsp grated garlic
1 tsp of sesame oil
1 1/2 lb of baby bok choy, cut in half
salt to taste

DIRECTIONS:
1. Add 1 tbsp of coconut oil to a hot pan.
2. Add 1 tbsp of ginger and 1 tbsp of grated garlic to the oil. Let crisp for 20 seconds.
3. Add the bok choy and cook over medium high heat until tender (3-5 minutes)
4. Remove the bok choy from the pan and in the same pan add 2 tbsp of coconut oil.
5. Over medium high heat, add the two eggs and scramble them.
6. Remove the scrambled eggs from the pan and set aside.
7. Add the last tbsp of coconut oil then add in the brown rice.
8. Add in the soy sauce and the chopped scallions.
9. Stir fry until heated through (about 4 minutes).
10. Add the eggs back in and its ready!

Now after all this all you need is to buy the appropriate buns. We used these guys:

Sesame Bread

Sesame Bread

But you can also use green onion pancakes, or soft steamed buns. I think next time we might do the green onion pancakes, you can buy them frozen from 99 Ranch and they are SO good.

So once you have all your ingredients you can add whatever toppings you like; we did thinly sliced onions, sliced thai chili peppers and chopped scallions. I imagine other chilis, cilantro, and hoisin sauce would all be great with this too.

Toppings: Thai Chilies, Sliced Onions, Scallions

Toppings: Thai Chilies, Sliced Onions, Scallions

And then assemble as you like and eat away.

Asian Braised Pork Buns

Asian Braised Pork Buns

Asian Braised Pork based on this recipe.
Ginger-Scallion Sauce based on this recipe.

TIPS:
– Feel free to adjust the amount of sugar and spicy elements (like the sambal oelek and chili oil) in these recipes, some people like it sweeter, others like it spicier.
– Any other cabbage-like vegetable would complement this dish, if you don’t like/can’t find bok choy: regular cabbage, Chinese cabbage, kale or brussel sprouts would work.
– You can definitely use any oil for the fried rice and bok choy, we like coconut oil because its a good source of medium-chain fatty acids which are great for your health and can aid in weight loss by promoting fat oxidation and reduced food intake (source). They are also coconut-y and delicious! However, naturally if you are allergic to coconut please substitute for vegetable oil.

Polite Provisions

We’ve been hearing a lot about Polite Provisions, which is from the same owner’s as Noble Experiment and is supposed to have quite the ambitious cocktail program. Polite Provisions is in University Heights, on the corner of 30th and Adams. Its definitely a little more bare bones than the area around Adams/Park Ave, which has lot of restaurants and shops, but you can tell there’s trendy new places popping up around it (like its brother meatball shop restaurant Soda & Swine which is right next door and Jayne’s Gastropub which is around the corner).

The decor of the place is awesome. Its very Art Deco 1920s style, with old school street lamps and an engraved ceiling. The bar is very long and there are extra tables and seating. Although it was Saturday around 8:30 pm and all the seating was taken the bar was not super packed and there was standing room next to the bar and enough bartenders that you could easily order and they would check up on you. No need to insert yourself in between two strangers and hope to catch a glance of one of the bartenders whilst holding your credit card out in front of you to order a drink.

Polite Provisions Interior

Although Polite Provisions only serves drinks you can order food from Soda & Swine next door and they wil bring over.

Their drink menu is extensive and covers a lot of different tastes. They have dessert cocktails (with chocolate/cream/maple syrup!), beer cocktails, cocktails on draft, lighter champagne based cocktails and more spirit forward fare such as negronis. They also have punch bowls (a good deal if you came with a larger group), wine, and because this is San Diego naturally they have a good selection of craft beer. Maybe more unexpectedly they also have a good selection of virgin soda cocktails so your designated driver doesn’t have to sadly sip on a Diet Coke while everyone else samples the good stuff. First we ordered the Misty Mountain Buck (rye whiskey, fresh lime juice, organic pineapple, housemade, ginger beer & bitters) and the Honey Stone Julep (bourbon, organic mint, apricot liqueur & honey). Both were excellent, especially for $8 dollars. The Misty Mountain Buck was very ginger-y and very pineapple-y but well balanced and refreshing. The Honey Stone Julep was more spirit-forward but also sweet and the apricot and honey flavors complemented the mint really well.

Honey Stone Julep (left) and Misty Mountain Buck (right)

Honey Stone Julep (left) and Misty Mountain Buck (right)

You could taste that they use very fresh, top-notch ingredients. A lot of their ingredients are house made too which shows how much they care about the final product. Our next drinks were the Chocolate Negroni (gin, Campari, Punt e Mes vermouth, creme de cacao and chocolate bitters) and the Coal Miner’s Daughter (a bourbon based drink we don’t recall the other ingredients of and that is not on their menu online…). The Negroni was interesting and definitely had chocolate-y notes which balanced out the Campari and the orange peel that is traditionally served with negronis. Don’t know if we would order it again though. The Coal Miner’s Daughter was good as well, this was a very spirit-forward drink. We liked our first cocktails better but these were definitely not too shabby either.

CHECK:
Misty Mountain Buck $8
Honey Stone Julep $8
Chocolate Negroni $9
Coal Miner’s Daughter $8
TOTAL: $35.64 (w/ tax)

Overall the price, the atmosphere, and the drinks were all excellent. We will definitely be returning to Polite Provisions.

Polite Provisions
4696 30th St
San Diego, CA 92116
politeprovisions.com/

Brooklyn Girl Eatery

Brooklyn Girl is a great spot in Mission Hills doing fresh and inventive food and one of our favorite go-to neighborhood spots. The restaurant has a nice look to it and definitely lives up to its “Brooklyn” title. It’s housed in a warehouse style building but has a cool vibe with modern art on the walls, big crystal chandeliers in bird cages and trees wrapped in lights inside. They have a restaurant seated dining area, a bar area, communal tables and a “pantry” section that sells food items.

Menu

Menu

We have been here a couple times and not only do we love the food but the service seems to be on point here. Also the bar and communal dining tables are great when you want to stop by but do not have a reservation.

The bar area

The bar area

BREAD: In fact you do not get bread, they instead serve you popcorn which has been spiced differently every time we’ve been. Last time it was Thyme and Butter Popcorn (shown below) and the previous time it was a spicier version.

Thyme & Butter Popcorn

Thyme & Butter Popcorn

APPETIZER: Ok. You must try the Bacon Wrapped Vietnamese Meatballs. With a name like that how can you even pass it up? Between the flavorful pork, the crisp salty bacon and the sweet-spicy glaze this hits all the right spots. The slaw on top doesn’t hurt either.

Ginger Glazed Bacon Wrapped Pork Meatballs

Bacon Wrapped Vietnamese Meatballs

Vietnamese Meatball

Vietnamese Meatball

ENTREE: This is one of the few restaurants where the chicken can compete with steak and seafood. Normally we always go for steak/seafood when eating out but here the roasted chicken is amazing. Another fantastic standby is their Williams Burger. You pick between cheddar and blue cheese and can add cherry wood smoked bacon, a fried egg, or fried oysters for extra. We definitely suggest adding the bacon. This burger comes with the classic sides (lettuce, tomatoes, pickle) and the Kobe/Angus beef was cooked to a perfect medium rare. No crazy aioli’s or unusual ingredients, just a classic done right (including the crispy thin fries!). Sometimes you can really tell the caliber of a restaurant when even their salads sound/are delicious. We ordered the Duck and Date salad and if you are a fan of duck this is the dish for you. The duck is falling off the bone tender and comes accompanied by frisee lettuce, spinach, Marcona almonds, chopped up dates and banyals vinaigrette. The richness of the duck pairs well with the sweet chewy dates and the fresh greens, a great cold weather salad (it’s been chilly lately in San Diego!).

Duck and Date Salad

Duck and Date Salad

Williams Burger

Williams Burger

SIDES: One of the must order sides is their Cornbread and Honey: freshly baked cornbread (made to order) with a molten white cheddar core is topped with honeycomb and brought to your table. It’s sweet and salty and we actually prefer it as an appetizer than a side. Another notable side is the Brussels and Bacon. If you normally think of brussel sprouts as limp, yellow-y, boiled bitter little bundles you are in for a treat. They are deep fried until they are shattering-ly crispy on the outside then served with bacon and caramelized pecans. Definitely a fantastic thing to add to your order and we always end up fighting for the last few pecans.

Brussels & Bacon

Brussels & Bacon

Brooklyn Girl has simple but inventive takes on dishes and we like that it makes good food thats relatively affordable. This coupled with the good service and nice ambiance ensures that we will keep returning here, at least until we can find out how to copy those Vietnamese meatballs…

CHECK:
Bacon Wrapped Vietnamese Meatballs $11
Williams Burger $14
Duck and Date $12
Brussels and Bacon $8
TOTAL: $48.60 (w/ tax)

Brooklyn Girl Eatery
4033 Goldfinch St
San Diego, California 92103
brooklyngirleatery.com

Triple-Whiskey Double-Chocolate Cupcakes

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day we wanted to come up with an appropriate recipe to celebrate this holiday with. At first we thought of chocolate and Bailey’s since that’s a classic pairing but ultimately decided there were enough of these recipes so came up with this Triple-Whiskey Double-Chocolate Cupcake: Chocolate cupcakes filled with whiskey simple syrup, whiskey cream and topped with chocolate ganache and whiskey caramel.

Whiskey Chocolate Cupcake

Whiskey Chocolate Cupcake

You can adjust how much whiskey you want to add and this recipe definitely works for bourbon or rum as well.

Whiskey Custard Filling

Whiskey Custard Filling

RECIPE:

INGREDIENTS:

Chocolate Cupcakes:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled

Whiskey Simple Syrup:
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup whiskey

Whiskey Custard:
1/2 cup of heavy cream
1/2 cup of milk
1/4 sugar
2 egg yolks
1 heaped tbsp corn starch
1 tsp vanilla extract or 1 vanilla pod

Chocolate Ganache:
1/2 cup of heavy cream
8 ounces chopped semisweet chocolate

Whiskey Caramel:
1 cup of sugar
1/3 cup of water
1/3 cup of heavy cream, warmed
2 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 tbsp whiskey

Procedures:
Chocolate Cupcakes:
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Fit the 12 molds of a muffin tin with paper muffin cups.
2.Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. 3. With a stand mixer or a hand mixer and a large bowl, beat the butter at medium speed until soft and creamy. Add the sugar and beat for two minutes, until it is blended into the butter.
4. Add the egg, then the yolk, beating for 1 minute between each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
5. Beat in the vanilla, then reduce the mixer speed to low and add half the dry ingredients, mixing only until they disappear.
6. Scrape down the bowl and add the buttermilk, mixing until incorporated, then mix in the remaining dry ingredients.
7. Scrape down the bowl, add the melted chocolate, and mix it in by hand with a rubber spatula.
8. Divide the batter evenly into the prepared molds. Bake for 22 – 25 minutes, or until the tops of the cakes are springy and a tester inserted in the centers comes out clean. Transfer the muffin pan to a cooling rack and allow the cakes to cool.

Whiskey Simple Syrup:
1. In a saucepan, heat the whiskey and the sugar until thesugar is fully dissolved, stirring occasionally.
2. Let it cool.

Whiskey Custard:
1. Whisk the egg yolks, cornstarch and sugar in a bowl.
2. Mix the cream and milk in a heavy medium saucepan under medium heat and heat until its close to boiling.
3. Lower heat then slowly whisk cream and milk into egg mixture. Return mixture to saucepan.
4. Stir over low heat until the mixture thickens, about 5 to 8 minutes. Transfer to
bowl.
5. Stir in whiskey and vanilla. Cool to room temperature then cover and refrigerate.

Whiskey Caramel:
1. Combine the sugar and water in a heavy saucepan; stir to mix and melt.
2. Cook over low heat, using the handle of the pan to swirl the liquid and ensure that the sugar is completely dissolved. (From this stage forward, do not touch the caramel with a spoon or spatula until the final step.) It should be absolutely clear. This takes about 4 minutes
3. Raise the heat to medium-high, bring to a boil and cook, swirling the pan occasionally until the caramel turns a dark amber color, like maple syrup (about 10 to 12 minutes). Remove the pan from the heat.
4. Carefully add the warm cream to the caramel; the caramel will froth and steam.
5. Return the pan to low heat, stirring gently with a wooden spoon to dissolve any solidified caramel until the sauce is smooth, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter and whiskey.
6. Let cool.

Chocolate Ganache:
1. Cook the heavy cream and chocolate on the top of a double boiler over simmering water until smooth and warm, stirring occasionally.

ASSEMBLY:
1. Cut cones in the cooled cupcakes and slice off the end of the cones so you only have a “cap” like so .
2. Use a pastry brush to brush the inside of the cupcakes with the whiskey simple syrup.
3. Use a teaspoon or pastry bag to fill the cavity in the cupcake with whiskey custard.
4. Cap the cupcakes.
5. Use a spatula or knife to spread the ganache on the cupcakes.
6. Lastly, use a spoon to swirl glaze onto the top of the cupcakes (if the caramel hardened microwave it for a couple seconds to loosen it again).

whiskeycaramelcupcakes2

TIPS:
1. Feel free to adjust the amount of whiskey (or whatever alcohol you want to use) according to taste. You can add less whiskey to the custard or substitute water for some of the whiskey in the simple syrup for example.
2. You can make the custard, caramel and ganache the day before to make it easier.
3. If you’re feeling lazy you can make the ganache in the microwave: mix the cream and chocolate and microwave for 35 second increments, mixing in between until its all melted.

Whiskey Caramel based on this recipe.

Chocolate Cupcake Recipe based on this recipe

Board & Brew

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The Famous Baja Beef

Board & Brew is a local family-owned sandwich shop that serves awesome fresh food and what might just be the best sandwich in San Diego . Their first and main spot is in Del Mar (this is the one we like to go to) but they also have locations in Carlsbad and San Clemente. We’ve been going to Board and Brew for years, usually about once a week, and we love the consistently great food and the awesome staff. We have also been bringing visiting friends and family here for years and more than one person has declared the Baja Beef their favorite sandwich EVER. I know, it’s a bold claim, but it isn’t a stretch.

The Baja Beef has marinated steak, grilled onions, jalapeños, mayo, and melted jack cheese on a toasted French baguette. The steak is juicy, tender, and full of intense flavor! The cheese and mayo add creaminess, the peppers add spice and the crisp, sweet grilled onions round everything off. Its not a super complicated sandwich, but it is as good as it gets. We’ll go ahead and say it, the Baja Beef is the best sandwich we’ve had in San Diego. It is Board n’ Brew’s best seller and the definition of pure happiness in a quick meal. We dare anyone to try it and say they weren’t blown away.

Baja Beef Close Up

Baja Beef Close Up

Look at it. How can you say no to that? (Unless of course you are a vegetarian or not fond of spicy food…if its the latter I recommend you get it with no jalapeños and you’ll be golden)

Although in our opinion the Baja Beef does reign supreme, Board & Brew has other tasty options like the the “Vegi” Supreme (vegetarian), their Turkado (turkey + avocado naturally), and lastly another favorite the Spicy Beef Dip.

Spicy Beef Dip

Spicy Beef Dip

The Spicy Beef Dip has roast beef, melted swiss cheese, thinly sliced red onions, mayo, dijon, jalapeños, and is served on a toasted baguette. Lastly like any dip its served with au jus on the side. The roast beef and cheese meld together so well, and the dijon and jalapenos add extra dimension and spiciness. Dipping the toasted bread in the super flavorful au jus ends it perfectly. If you are not a mustard/spicy fan you can always order the Beef Dip which does not have them.

Board n Brew Menu

Board n Brew Menu

Overall Board & Brew is a great casual sandwich stop when you want something satisfying (the sandwiches are huge) and affordable but are not willing to compromise on taste. There’s something for every one, and they have a decent selection of beer to boot. On weekends it can get pretty crowded so we recommend calling or texting in ahead to order and avoid the line. When you next get the chance, do yourself a favor and cruise on down the coast for nice scenery and an epic meal.

CHECK:
Baja Beef $6.95
Spicy Beef Dip $6.95
Chips $1.50
TOTAL: $15.40 (w/ tax)

Board & Brew

1212 Camino Del Mar
Del Mar, CA 92014

201 Oak Avenue
Coastal Carlsbad, CA 92008

979 Avenida Pico, Unit C
San Clemente, CA 92673

http://www.boardandbrew.com/