We're on a mission to try every restaurant within a couple block radius of our house. Our biggest fear is that there is a hole-in-the-wall gem right next door that we're overlooking. With that mission in mind, we checked out El Rinconcito Cafe, a tiny Salvadorean-Mexican restaurant on 11th St NW.
Yelpers raved about the carne deshilada with egg and they were spot on. This classic Salvadorean comfort food dish features shredded flank steak tossed with a fried egg. It was paired with a generous side of avocado, rice, beans, and cheese. Nothing fancy, just simple ingredients done really well.
Second Thoughts from B
You know the old Warner Bros. cartoons that go for the cheap laugh by torturing their antagonists? Anvils falling on toes, characters flattened by speeding trains, and of course, spicy food that makes tongues and eyes shoot out of heads, you know the drill.
That's how hot my shrimp was. The spice grew in intensity as beads of sweet immediately formed on my forehead. Handmade tortillas and buttery rice provided only mild relief. It was painful....
But... painful in a good way. I am not a fan of burning my face off for the satisfaction of saying I was able to endure it. Rather, spice should add another element to a dish to provide balance. I appreciated the pain because it married well with the familiar flavors of Central America. It made me mindful of the creaminess of the rice, the sweetness of the tomatoes and shrimp, and the tart acidity of the slaw, not to mention the warmth of our waitress who seemed genuinely entertained/pleased that someone was enjoying this dish.
So while I might have looked like Wile E. Coyote after Bugs had swapped a hot dog for a stick of dynamite, I was grinning from ear to ear with every bite.