Archive for 'Puerto Rican'

Sazon’s Chicken Jibarito Sandwich: For When Fried Plantains Sound Better Than Bread

There aren’t a lot of Puerto Rican food options downtown unless you count Sandra’s Food Spot Cart on Nassau St. in the Financial District, or lump West Side Coffee Shop or Sophie’s Cuban together in that vague category of “Latin food.” There is, however, Sazon on Reade St. (btw. Church & W. Broadway) in Tribeca. Yes, it’s a fancy take on Puerto Rican food, but the lunch menu has a few options at the $10 or below mark. I decided to try out their take on the jibarito – the sandwich with fried plantains in place of bread – and was pretty happy with what I got.

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Sandra’s Puerto Rican Food Makes My Life a Lil’ Brighter

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Considering the sheer number of those who have immigrated from Puerto Rico to New York City, I’m really shocked at how difficult it can be to find Puerto Rican food. Sure, you could head to the outer boroughs for the good stuff or wait for the random street fair to come around, but it seems to me that pasteles should be to New York what tacos are to L.A. It should just be what the average New Yorker goes out and grabs for a quick bite. And yet, for some reason it’s hard as hell to find this kind of thing in the business centers of Manhattan. Lucky for all of us Downtown, there’s Sandra’s food cart.

Located on Nassau between Cedar and Liberty, very close to Ravioli Fair and Gloria’s burrito cart, Sandra’s happens to be one of my favorite food carts. The ladies working there are unbelievably nice, somehow the hot dogs are better than any other cart in the city, and every once in awhile they’ll bust out some seasonal specials. Over the winter they were serving a beef stew that my coworker told me was awesome, but the day I went to go check it out was apparently the first day they decided to stop serving it (As Zach would say, “Cue overhead shot with me yelling, ‘Nooooooooooooooo!’”). I wasn’t going to miss my opportunity this time. I noticed last week that they had started serving pasteles on Fridays with rice, pigeon peas, and salad for 8 bucks. You couldn’t stop me, no way, no how.

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