Ask who has the best tamales in the Valley and chances are you'll find yourself in an endless debate involving countless national and international variations of the wrapped snack.
Ask who has the best tamales oaxaqueño and the discussion stops with Elizabeth Hernandez, owner of La 15 y Salsas, the cheery little Oaxacan restaurant in Sunnyslope. Hers are pretty much perfect.
Not just because of the homemade masa, which is moist and delicate, or the flavor infused from its banana leaf wrapping, but because Hernandez' star ingredient -- her signature mole negro -- is one of the Valley's finest.
You don't have to eat just mole at Hernandez's restaurant -- but you could.
Here's an excerpt from this week's review:
"If the subject of the Oaxacan street food tlayudas comes up, you should say 'yes.' The thin, crackly corn tortillas, the size of dinner plates, are made in and imported from Oaxaca. Hernandez slathers them in a black bean sauce before covering them with lettuce, tomato, ropy and salty Oaxacan cheese called quesillo, and your choice of bright orange bits of al pastor marinated in vinegar and spices, long strips of the Oaxacan jerky-like beef called tasajo, or a little of both.
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You'll want the latter. Flavorful and expertly prepared by Hernandez's husband, a former butcher in Oaxaca, the meats are often purchased, along with the crispy tortillas, by Oaxacan customers who want to make tlayudas at home."
Hungry for mole, er, more? Read my full review of La 15 y Salsas here.