When I find myself in the mood for Spanish food I usually set off running for Sophie’s, trying to get in and out as quickly as possible before the smell of food forms so close of a relationship with my clothes that I leave smelling like an empanada. Today, however, when my stomach started shouting for me to fill it with spanish food I opted to pass on the Cuban food and go for Dominican (I don’t know the difference, don’t ask).
A couple of blocks away from my office, on 45th between 3rd and Lexington, is a little Dominican place called Mangu, named after the dish, that promotes itself as home cooked Dominican fast food. On the menu today was BBQ Pork ribs. I got rice with beans, cassava fritters and how could I leave without getting a side of mangu with onions on top? Mangu is not just a fun word, but is also mashed plantains.
Note: The fan is used to spread the smells of this yummy lunch throughout the office and make everyone jealous.
The portions are pretty big and with this amount of food in front of me I am just begging to fall asleep after eating. So, is this really home cooked fast food? That is exactly what it tastes like. I am pretty sure they have their grandmother and mother locked in the back of the restaurant cooking. They probably throw a chancleta (a slipper) at them every time they slow down. (If it were an Italian place they would probably show them the wooden spoon everytime they slow down.)
The Pork ribs taste awesome. The meat just falls right off the bone and they are good and saucy, not dry. The rice is rice and the cassavas are addicting. As for the mangu, well its mashed plantains and that is exactly what it tastes like. It isn’t bad, in fact it taste a bit like mashed peas (if you like that flavor). I could have used a nice spice in the mangu though. Overall great meal. It was $8.75 for the lunch special and another $3.75 for the side of mangu (which you could switch the rice out for the mangu instead, but I am a fattie at heart so had to go for both).
Now excuse me while I go find a spot to take a nap and sleep off this lunch.