Agave taco bar in fort lauderdale restaurant review _ new times broward-palm beach

At least, that’s the feeling Alarcon says he is searching for. Recipe for chicken fingers fried A native of Monterrey, Mexico, his first order of business whenever he returns home is not to see friends or visit family, but to hunt down the first street vendor able to quench his taco craving.

“Everything on this menu reminds me of something that occurred in my life, from a childhood memory to cooking with my grandmother or stopping at a street vendor with my grandfather,” says Alarcon. Chicken fingers for kids “We’re not just another traditional Mexican restaurant.


Breading for chicken fingers It’s my interpretation of Monterrey, for the people of South Florida.”

That includes, of course, said signature dish, deemed a regional specialty of sorts across Mexican states like Nuevo Leon, Durango, and Chihuahua, where large slabs of pork are cooked on a vertical spit and seasoned with a combination of spices and a blend of guajillo and ancho chilies that stains the meat a bright, near-fluorescent red. Best baked chicken fingers recipe The outer layer, crackling and crispy, is shaved from the spit and often served with a handful of fine-chopped onion, cilantro, and a slice or two of fresh pineapple.

At Agave, Alarcon doesn’t use a spit but marinates fat cuts of pork and beef with the same blend of chilies and spices he recalls from his youth, forming a pasty-thick sauce the color of brick. Baked chicken fingers healthy The resulting tacos are small enough to fit in one hand, stuffed to the brim with meat atop a layer of sauce so generous that cubes of onion tumble to the plate when you grab hold to take a bite. Crispy chicken fingers baked Good thing they come five per order, instead of the usual three, making them worth their weight in porky goodness.

Despite the hefty seasoning and hearty sauce, the predominant flavor here remains the meat, followed closely by the slow burn of chili-spiked adobo. Southern fried chicken fingers Those in the know will ask for theirs to be cooked extra-crispy on the grill, which results in an almost bacon-like succulence similar to the spit-cooked meats you’ll find in the streets of Monterrey.

A self-taught chef, Alarcon grew up splitting his time between the United States and Mexico. Chicken fingers fried After close to a decade living the corporate lifestyle postcollege, in 2010, he abandoned his career to open a restaurant in Davie with his wife. Crispy chicken fingers recipe fried They named it El Agave Azul, what was once conceived as a catering business but morphed into a successful counter-service restaurant. What goes good with chicken fingers The modest 500-square-foot space — much of it reserved for the kitchen — had little room for customer seating.

For Azul’s most loyal patrons, that didn’t matter; the restaurant simply transformed into a bring-your-own-seating type of deal, people sharing bottles of hot sauce and bowls of salsa over paper plates filled with tacos, seated at folding chairs and pop-up tables on the sidewalk.

Today, Agave Taco Bar is the modern progression of El Agave Azul, says Alarcon, and the menu is a more focused presentation of the original restaurant’s most popular dishes. Shake and bake chicken fingers It offers everything from a traditional, fiery-red menudo soup to aguachile de res — a dish so unknown to Americans that should you Google it, the resulting query will produce only links to Spanish-language recipes.

Although the menu is different, the atmosphere isn’t. What to eat with chicken fingers The service at Agave is California chill. Sides for chicken fingers Ordering is uncomplicated. Best fried chicken fingers recipe And seating is optional, but also plentiful and varied, offering the comforts of a larger, more elaborate restaurant with a fast-casual-eatery-meets-coffee-bar cool vibe.

No matter how (or when) you choose to dine, if you’ve come for the tacos, you’re in luck. Kids chicken fingers The menu boasts a staggering 15 different meats, a selection of beef, chicken, pork, and fish ranging from a carne asada and picadillo to chicken marinated in salsa verde or ancho tinga. Crispy oven chicken fingers There’s also pork belly, cream-sauce-smothered poblano peppers, and grilled shrimp.

Order the barbacoa, a specialty here made from cheek and tongue. How to make chicken fingers from scratch In Alarcon’s native northern Mexico, it’s a traditional practice to cook the head of the cow — nothing wasted — including brains and eyes. Recipe of chicken fingers After hours of braising, the meat become so soft that it nearly melts in your mouth.

The barbacoa is usually eaten for breakfast, although you can order them anytime at Agave, served on fresh corn tortillas with a mix of chopped onion and cilantro, a squeeze of lime juice, and a spoonful of salsa. Recipe for homemade chicken fingers Alarcon’s are served two per order with a choice of flour or corn tortillas and a choice of toppings, including a purple-tinged escabeche de cebolla (a Mexican relish of tender strips of pickled red onion flavored with oregano and cumin).

When ordering trompo, you might be intrigued — as I was — about the chef’s use of flour tortillas. Recipes using chicken fingers Don’t be. How to make chicken fingers in oven These are delivered daily from a nearby baker who also hails from Alarcon’s home city. How to make crispy chicken fingers Turns out flour is actually the more accepted ingredient in places like Monterrey, and in fact across much of northern Mexico, considered the taco-meat conveyor of choice over corn tortillas. How to deep fry chicken fingers The area is known to make at least 40 varieties, which allow for dishes like the gringa, a version of the trompo served in a grilled flour tortilla, its edges blistered to a satisfying crunch and covered with melted cheese.

No matter how you order yours, the tacos pair best with an ice-cold Michelada dusted with tanjin, a rust-colored, citrus-tinged, pepper powder Alarcon says he puts on everything from potato chips and popcorn to fruit and drink glasses. Deep fried chicken fingers batter For this drink, it creates a tangy garnish for a Mexican-style bloody mary.

Of course, not everything at Agave is traditional. How to cook chicken fingers in oven In Mexico, you won’t find menudo available all day, every day. How to make breaded chicken fingers It’s typically served on Sundays, or as a post-New Year’s celebration dish, but you can order it any time you like here. Chicken with fingers The blood-red broth is based on Alarcon’s grandmother’s recipe, beef tripe cut into small pieces and cured in lime for 24 hours before it’s cooked for several hours in a three-pepper marinade.

There’s also a section of the menu dubbed “botanas” — Alarcon’s version of Mexican snacks or small plates, each made to order. Chicken fingers pictures Many of them aren’t what you’d find in Monterrey, but they’re good. How to bread chicken fingers That includes the alitas asadas, grilled chicken wings the size of your fist, smothered in a tangy sauce Alarcon created from scratch at home. Homemade chicken fingers oven His children approved, so it went on the menu.