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Crispy Tacos...Any suggestions?

Crispy Tacos...Any suggestions?
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  • Crispy Tacos...Any suggestions?

    Post #1 - July 17th, 2006, 1:02 pm
    Post #1 - July 17th, 2006, 1:02 pm Post #1 - July 17th, 2006, 1:02 pm
    I know, I know...totally inauthentic...invented by a dude named "Bell" in SoCal many years ago....but I really enjoy a good crispy taco, gosh darn it....there's just something about the crunch factor that makes it for me...

    As a shallow transplant from LA, really miss crispy beauties at Casa Escobar, El Chavo, Don Antonios and The Talpa (and yes, Jack in the Box and Del Taco dammit)

    Now, I'm very aware this is sacrilege to many who post here....but, can anyone offer some tips on where to find some superior crispies here in my new city (Chicago)..

    Thanks.....
  • Post #2 - July 17th, 2006, 1:10 pm
    Post #2 - July 17th, 2006, 1:10 pm Post #2 - July 17th, 2006, 1:10 pm
    As someone who is a staunch supporter of inauthentic as long as it's good and isn't trying to pass itself off as authentic to the ignorant (*ahem*... Olive Garden), I fully support you in this quest.

    Sadly, while I am long on moral support, I am woefully short on actual recommendations. But I, too, would be curious to hear what others might know.
  • Post #3 - July 17th, 2006, 1:11 pm
    Post #3 - July 17th, 2006, 1:11 pm Post #3 - July 17th, 2006, 1:11 pm
    Try the white boy tacos at Picante on Division. My boyfriend is also from the southwest and loves 'em.
  • Post #4 - July 17th, 2006, 1:14 pm
    Post #4 - July 17th, 2006, 1:14 pm Post #4 - July 17th, 2006, 1:14 pm
    This Picante, or another one?

    Picante Taqueria Restaurant
    (773) 328-8800
    (312) 328-8800
    2016 1/2 W Division St
    Chicago, IL 60622
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #5 - July 17th, 2006, 1:15 pm
    Post #5 - July 17th, 2006, 1:15 pm Post #5 - July 17th, 2006, 1:15 pm
    I actually noticed the other day at Taqueria Moran that one of the dinner entres noted they would deep fry the taco shells by request... although not Ortega style, probably somewhat like the crispy taco you crave. I have seen/tried them however, but it's a lead at least.

    Taqueria Moran
    2226 N. California Ave

    Also - Burger King (At least the one near me) serves a version of crispy tacos... deep fried crispy shell tacos.
    Last edited by ab on July 17th, 2006, 1:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #6 - July 17th, 2006, 1:20 pm
    Post #6 - July 17th, 2006, 1:20 pm Post #6 - July 17th, 2006, 1:20 pm
    Try the white boy tacos at Picante on Division


    Is this really the name of the item? How is it prepared?

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #7 - July 17th, 2006, 1:24 pm
    Post #7 - July 17th, 2006, 1:24 pm Post #7 - July 17th, 2006, 1:24 pm
    That's the Picante. They also have a location on Lincoln, half a block south of Roscoe. I've only had their veggie burritos, but they are amazing.
  • Post #8 - July 17th, 2006, 1:29 pm
    Post #8 - July 17th, 2006, 1:29 pm Post #8 - July 17th, 2006, 1:29 pm
    What about tostadas, hold the beans? You can't fold 'em up, but then again your average crisp shell shatters after the first bite anyway.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #9 - July 17th, 2006, 1:38 pm
    Post #9 - July 17th, 2006, 1:38 pm Post #9 - July 17th, 2006, 1:38 pm
    One of the combination plates at nuevo leon in pilsen, actually, involves a crispy taco filled with ground beef and all the rest you'd expect. It was a regular old corn tortilla that had been deep fried and folded to order.

    I suspect they'd be willing to do it with any of their fillings.
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #10 - July 17th, 2006, 1:39 pm
    Post #10 - July 17th, 2006, 1:39 pm Post #10 - July 17th, 2006, 1:39 pm
    I love the type of taco's being mentioned!

    If I am incorrect please correct me...

    They are the type that are sold at Jack in the Box. Supplied frozen, a tortilla with the meat micture inside, placed in the deep fryer, then garnished with cheese, lettuce, tomato and a splash of hot sauce.

    Cock Robin on Lake Street used to make some great ones and since they have closed I did find another place to get them but where evades me at the moment.

    Grrr.

    I will visit a few local haunts and see what I can dig up.

    Stay tuned...
  • Post #11 - July 17th, 2006, 2:22 pm
    Post #11 - July 17th, 2006, 2:22 pm Post #11 - July 17th, 2006, 2:22 pm
    the aptly named "white boy taco" is avail by that name @ picante on division and damen.
    "In pursuit of joys untasted"
    from Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata
  • Post #12 - July 17th, 2006, 2:31 pm
    Post #12 - July 17th, 2006, 2:31 pm Post #12 - July 17th, 2006, 2:31 pm
    They are the type that are sold at Jack in the Box. Supplied frozen, a tortilla with the meat micture inside, placed in the deep fryer, then garnished with cheese, lettuce, tomato and a splash of hot sauce.


    Interesting. I actually like those tacos mostly for nostalgia. Last year Burger King had those greasy tacos on their menu for less than a buck each.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #13 - July 17th, 2006, 4:25 pm
    Post #13 - July 17th, 2006, 4:25 pm Post #13 - July 17th, 2006, 4:25 pm
    Panther in the Den wrote:I love the type of taco's being mentioned!

    If I am incorrect please correct me...

    They are the type that are sold at Jack in the Box. Supplied frozen, a tortilla with the meat micture inside, placed in the deep fryer, then garnished with cheese, lettuce, tomato and a splash of hot sauce.

    Cock Robin on Lake Street used to make some great ones and since they have closed I did find another place to get them but where evades me at the moment.

    Grrr.

    I will visit a few local haunts and see what I can dig up.

    Stay tuned...


    In KC, in the Hispanic neighborhoods, in the hole in the wall places that have no reason to try to cater to a more american palette these tacos are the norm. But they aren't supplied frozen. They take a thin corn tortilla, fill it with cooked very lightly seasoned ground beef or shredded chicken, then deep fry it and serve it w/ lettuce and cheese and fresh salsa. Some places(usually the busier more amercanized seeming ones) use the already made shells and meat with lots of seasoning like at Taco Bell and other fast food places, but I never liked that kind. I grew up on these kind of tacos, and the first kind I described seem like authentic food, even though its so different from here(and I know nobody in Mexico eats crispy tacos, just taquitos). Anyone know why there's such a difference btw. the tacos of Chicago and KC when both have a large Mexican populations? I really like both kinds, if they are made well.
  • Post #14 - July 17th, 2006, 4:34 pm
    Post #14 - July 17th, 2006, 4:34 pm Post #14 - July 17th, 2006, 4:34 pm
    bnowell724 wrote:
    Panther in the Den wrote:I love the type of taco's being mentioned!

    If I am incorrect please correct me...

    They are the type that are sold at Jack in the Box. Supplied frozen, a tortilla with the meat micture inside, placed in the deep fryer, then garnished with cheese, lettuce, tomato and a splash of hot sauce.

    Cock Robin on Lake Street used to make some great ones and since they have closed I did find another place to get them but where evades me at the moment.

    Grrr.

    I will visit a few local haunts and see what I can dig up.

    Stay tuned...


    In KC, in the Hispanic neighborhoods, in the hole in the wall places that have no reason to try to cater to a more american palette these tacos are the norm. But they aren't supplied frozen. They take a thin corn tortilla, fill it with cooked very lightly seasoned ground beef or shredded chicken, then deep fry it and serve it w/ lettuce and cheese and fresh salsa. Some places(usually the busier more amercanized seeming ones) use the already made shells and meat with lots of seasoning like at Taco Bell and other fast food places, but I never liked that kind. I grew up on these kind of tacos, and the first kind I described seem like authentic food, even though its so different from here(and I know nobody in Mexico eats crispy tacos, just taquitos). Anyone know why there's such a difference btw. the tacos of Chicago and KC when both have a large Mexican populations? I really like both kinds, if they are made well.


    I think that there are two different things that we're talking about here: tacos dorados (which are made with tortillas and deep-fried) and American-style hard-shell tacos, which are generally made from the pre-made hard-shells (read:Ortega). I believe the Jack-In-The-Box/Burger King/Taco Bell style is the latter, while tacos dorados seems like the style that bnowell724 is describing.

    Tacos dorados are available in many taquerias around town, but many places just go with the very similar flautas.

    Best,
    Michael
  • Post #15 - July 17th, 2006, 4:50 pm
    Post #15 - July 17th, 2006, 4:50 pm Post #15 - July 17th, 2006, 4:50 pm
    I think that there are two different things that we're talking about here: tacos dorados (which are made with tortillas and deep-fried) and American-style hard-shell tacos, which are generally made from the pre-made hard-shells (read:Ortega). I believe the Jack-In-The-Box/Burger King/Taco Bell style is the latter, while tacos dorados seems like the style that bnowell724 is describing.

    Tacos dorados are available in many taquerias around town, but many places just go with the very similar flautas.

    Best,
    Michael


    So THAT's what they're called. Thank you.
  • Post #16 - July 17th, 2006, 5:15 pm
    Post #16 - July 17th, 2006, 5:15 pm Post #16 - July 17th, 2006, 5:15 pm
    Hi,

    On the Short-Notice-athon, we visited Carnitas Don Pedro for carnitas though I still vividly remember the deep fried brain (sesos) tacos (4 or 5 tacos for $2) bought by Rich4:

    Image

    Except for the brains, this was close to experience of the Jack in the Box taco, the style not the filling, which we just learned from EatChicago is a Taco dorado.

    Carnitas Don Pedro
    1113 W 18th St
    Chicago

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #17 - July 17th, 2006, 6:03 pm
    Post #17 - July 17th, 2006, 6:03 pm Post #17 - July 17th, 2006, 6:03 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:Except for the brains, this was close to experience of the Jack in the Box taco, the style not the filling, which we just learned from EatChicago is a Taco dorado.


    The late, lauded Tacos Del Pacifico was the undisputed heavyweight champion of Chicago when it came to tacos dorados.

    I do not normally order them, but I'd wager that any taqueria with a deep fryer would be willing to serve you a taco dorado.

    Best,
    Michael
  • Post #18 - July 17th, 2006, 6:17 pm
    Post #18 - July 17th, 2006, 6:17 pm Post #18 - July 17th, 2006, 6:17 pm
    Tacos dorados are (most?) often rolled, in the form that many Americans know as flautas. For most Guatemalans, tacos dorados are simply called "tacos." On the other board, there was a decent discussion of the crisp-shelled Cal-Mex or Tex-Mex taco, filled after frying (unlike the traditional dorados or what are sometimes called empanadas when they look like what Cathy pictured). It was hard to pin down an origin, though it seems to have been north of the border.
  • Post #19 - July 18th, 2006, 1:26 pm
    Post #19 - July 18th, 2006, 1:26 pm Post #19 - July 18th, 2006, 1:26 pm
    Burger King (those that are left) still makes the Jack in the Box
    style tacos. Fine for hangovers. The good thing is you can eat
    them one day , go to your favorite Mexican restaurant the next
    day and you didn't have mexican food two days in a row.


    dashboard diner
    "come as you are, You can eat in your car"
  • Post #20 - July 18th, 2006, 1:36 pm
    Post #20 - July 18th, 2006, 1:36 pm Post #20 - July 18th, 2006, 1:36 pm
    dashboard diner wrote:The good thing is you can eat them one day , go to your favorite Mexican restaurant the next day and you didn't have mexican food two days in a row.


    Snort!

    If you add Taco Bell to the mix, then you still only had Mexican once.

    I happen to like the double decker taco supreme at Taco Bell. It may not be precisely Mexican, though it can be pretty good as itself.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #21 - July 18th, 2006, 1:50 pm
    Post #21 - July 18th, 2006, 1:50 pm Post #21 - July 18th, 2006, 1:50 pm
    dashboard diner wrote:Burger King (those that are left) still makes the Jack in the Box
    style tacos. Fine for hangovers. The good thing is you can eat
    them one day , go to your favorite Mexican restaurant the next
    day and you didn't have mexican food two days in a row.


    dashboard diner
    "come as you are, You can eat in your car"


    I'm curious what you mean by "Burger King(those that are left)." I see them all over. I've never noticed they serve tacos.

    Do you mean Taco Bell? Their old school tacos(before they changed the shell formulation in the 90's) WERE a fairly close match to Jack-in-the-Box. No longer. Again, I see no rapid disappearence of Taco Bells...they've mostly joined up with Pizza Hut/KFC for dual ventures.
    "Johnny thought when all purpose had been forgotten the world would end this way, with a dance. He slumped back in a corner, drew his knees up to his chin, and watched."-Derek Jarman
  • Post #22 - July 18th, 2006, 2:12 pm
    Post #22 - July 18th, 2006, 2:12 pm Post #22 - July 18th, 2006, 2:12 pm
    Christopher Gordon wrote:
    dashboard diner wrote:Burger King (those that are left) ...


    I'm curious what you mean by "Burger King(those that are left)." I see them all over.


    Maybe a reference to a recent schism one local franchisee had with the national? See this Chicagoist post. Said franchisee changed all his locations to "Burger Delights", then "Chicken Delights..." the only one of those I ever drive past is now a Brown's Chicken/Chicago Way.
  • Post #23 - July 18th, 2006, 2:45 pm
    Post #23 - July 18th, 2006, 2:45 pm Post #23 - July 18th, 2006, 2:45 pm
    germuska wrote:
    Christopher Gordon wrote:
    dashboard diner wrote:Burger King (those that are left) ...


    I'm curious what you mean by "Burger King(those that are left)." I see them all over.


    Maybe a reference to a recent schism one local franchisee had with the national? See this Chicagoist post. Said franchisee changed all his locations to "Burger Delights", then "Chicken Delights..." the only one of those I ever drive past is now a Brown's Chicken/Chicago Way.


    I do know of the original Mattoon, IL Burger King which went to court over it's name when the unrelated, ubiquitous burger behemoth tried to sue it away. I've never eaten there...dunno if *they* serve tacos.
    "Johnny thought when all purpose had been forgotten the world would end this way, with a dance. He slumped back in a corner, drew his knees up to his chin, and watched."-Derek Jarman
  • Post #24 - July 18th, 2006, 4:01 pm
    Post #24 - July 18th, 2006, 4:01 pm Post #24 - July 18th, 2006, 4:01 pm
    Yes indeed...many Burger Kings do in fact serve (kind of) the Jack in the Box-style tacos. ...just make sure to order them with tomatoes for a reasonable facsimile of Jack's Monster Taco.

    These do somewhat satisfy my deep craving, but I just can't keep eating here too often as the guy at the drive thru is starting think I'm insane..

    I also once saw a guy get a crispy taco from some place that must have been near the Belmont Blue line stop...he got on the train and was crunching it loudly for several stops, grease, lettuce and shell all over his face and down the front of his shirt...and I was wishing I were him.....at least for the few minutes it took him to devour it...
  • Post #25 - July 18th, 2006, 4:17 pm
    Post #25 - July 18th, 2006, 4:17 pm Post #25 - July 18th, 2006, 4:17 pm
    ParkLaBrea wrote:I also once saw a guy get a crispy taco from some place that must have been near the Belmont Blue line stop...he got on the train and was crunching it loudly for several stops, grease, lettuce and shell all over his face and down the front of his shirt...and I was wishing I were him.....at least for the few minutes it took him to devour it...


    Sure there wasn't a camera situated somewhere on the train? Sounds like the old Carl's Jr. ad campaigns :-)
  • Post #26 - July 18th, 2006, 4:57 pm
    Post #26 - July 18th, 2006, 4:57 pm Post #26 - July 18th, 2006, 4:57 pm
    ParkLaBrea wrote:Yes indeed...many Burger Kings do in fact serve (kind of) the Jack in the Box-style tacos. ...just make sure to order them with tomatoes for a reasonable facsimile of Jack's Monster Taco.

    These do somewhat satisfy my deep craving, but I just can't keep eating here too often as the guy at the drive thru is starting think I'm insane..

    I also once saw a guy get a crispy taco from some place that must have been near the Belmont Blue line stop...he got on the train and was crunching it loudly for several stops, grease, lettuce and shell all over his face and down the front of his shirt...and I was wishing I were him.....at least for the few minutes it took him to devour it...


    Well, that's why I was mentioning...I'd totally try a BK taco...I swear I've never seen them *regularly* offered(perhaps as a promotional item years and years ago). Now I'm gonna be forced to ask at my local BK(conveniently connected to a Taco Fresca...which I've never partaken of). I can just imagine the looks and confusion I'll incur...*much pointing around the corner to the Taco Fresca?*

    I suppose the obvious implication is that my BK doesn't offer tacos cuz you can walk 10 ft and get them in the same room, but I'm pretty sure I haven't seen them on the downstate menus either.

    Perhaps, a kind reader will post the addresses of local BK tacos. A perverse quest as per this board's raison d'etre, I know.
    "Johnny thought when all purpose had been forgotten the world would end this way, with a dance. He slumped back in a corner, drew his knees up to his chin, and watched."-Derek Jarman
  • Post #27 - July 18th, 2006, 5:10 pm
    Post #27 - July 18th, 2006, 5:10 pm Post #27 - July 18th, 2006, 5:10 pm
    Hi,

    Perverse requests responded to!

    I just phoned the Highland Park Burger King, they have two tacos for $1.29. I asked them if all Burger Kings had these tacos, the manager assured me all Burger Kings have them.

    Burger King
    90 Skokie Valley Rd, Highland Park, IL
    (847) 831-2790

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #28 - July 18th, 2006, 5:47 pm
    Post #28 - July 18th, 2006, 5:47 pm Post #28 - July 18th, 2006, 5:47 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:Hi,

    Perverse requests responded to!

    I just phoned the Highland Park Burger King, they have two tacos for $1.29. I asked them if all Burger Kings had these tacos, the manager assured me all Burger Kings have them.

    Burger King
    90 Skokie Valley Rd, Highland Park, IL
    (847) 831-2790

    Regards,


    Thank you.

    I will just have to ask(I don't think I'll be making a trip to Highland Park for BK!).

    I keep trying to visualise the picture menu and just don't see tacos. Mysterious, indeed.
    "Johnny thought when all purpose had been forgotten the world would end this way, with a dance. He slumped back in a corner, drew his knees up to his chin, and watched."-Derek Jarman
  • Post #29 - July 18th, 2006, 5:57 pm
    Post #29 - July 18th, 2006, 5:57 pm Post #29 - July 18th, 2006, 5:57 pm
    They aren't on the picture menu, they're served as sides, along with the onion rings, mozzarella sticks, chicken strips, etc.
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #30 - July 19th, 2006, 12:20 pm
    Post #30 - July 19th, 2006, 12:20 pm Post #30 - July 19th, 2006, 12:20 pm
    My husband LOVES these. I like them too, they do bring to mind the Jack in the Box tacos. I've never ordered them, but our local Mexican restaurant, LaMagdalena in Addison has crispy tacos as an option on the menu, as does Santa Fe in Glen Ellyn. They call them Longy-style tacos. My favorites really are the "cheap taco" spots all over the place. I go past them a lot on Lake Street in Melrose Park and used to hit a lot of them late at night on Mannheim Road in Stone Park (OK, LOOOOONG time ago). From what I understand, the Canal Street market has lots of yummy things along these lines, although maybe not crispy tacos.

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