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 I10 I20 are lacking!

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mar52

  • Total Posts: 7593
  • Joined: 4/17/2005
  • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
I10 I20 are lacking! Sat, 02/2/13 6:46 PM (permalink)
Spent the last few weeks driving between Los Angeles and Texas.
I was able to to check in here a few times but decided to post when we got home.
 
I knew I wanted to eat at several places where I had meals in the past and I hit them all!
 
First I wanted something I'd only heard about.  Left the house at 6AM and drove through Tucson around 2PM stopping for a Sonoran Hot Dog at El Guero Canelo.  I heard that if I was going to have one, that was the place.
Luckily it wasn't far from I10.
 

 
The offered standard Mexican fare but I was there for the Sonoran.
 
The inside of El Guero Canelo reminded me of a school cafeteria.  Very sterile without much atmosphere.  From the look of those red ribbon things (what are they called?) they must get crowds at times.  I was lucky.
 

 
I ordered one Sonoran to go.  I was asked if i wanted it with everything and I answered affirmatively.
 
My Sonoran Hot Dog:
 

 
Ordinarily I would never order a hot dog with tomatoes, pinto beans, mayonnaise or ketchup.  However, if I was going to try one, I wanted it authentic.  Underneath those tomatoes there was a bacon wrapped beef hot dog, grilled onion and diced, charred poblano chili pieces... and mustard all stuffed into a Bolillo Roll.
 
I guess they only do the mayonnaise squiggle if you're eating in.
 
It was OMG Good!  I should have purchased two of them.  The combination of flavors in that roll were outstanding.  I thought I might hit El Guero Canelo on our way home, but we hit Tucson at rush hour and I just didn't want to fight to get off I10 and then back on.
 
We got to our night's stop, Las Cruces at night and it was dark. I don't like driving around in the dark when I don't know where i am.  So, there was a Whataburger right across the street from our motel.  Why not?  We don't have them in Los Angeles.  I like hitting fast food places that are foreign to California.
 
I kept it simple.  Burger, fries, soft drink and for a change up... a fried lemon pie.  It met every expectation and need.
 

 
I purchased some wonderful Mortadella with pistachios at Costco before we left and we snacked on it and string cheese on the road.  I hope they have it the next time I visit.
 
Next on my list was Pop's Plaace in Denison, Texas which is just south of the Oklahoma border between Dallas and Oklahoma City.  We've been there a few times in the past and they didn't disappoint.  Pop's has some of the finest chicken fried steak I've had.  The creamed corn was probably out of a can.  Wrong choice for a side on my part.
 

 

 
I ate the dessert before even thinking of taking a picture.  Pecan Cobbler.  Try it if you've never had it.
 
Next on my list and also in Denison was Jone's Family Barbecue.
 

 
We'd also been there several times before.  I had the babybacks and Sharon had the ham.
 

 
Home run with the ribs!  Smokey, moist and fall off the bone delicious.
 
What I found curious was the condiment bar.  I'd never seen butter served this way.
 

 
I think it was butter.
 
They had just put out a new pan of peach cobbler so that was my choice for dessert.
 

 
The family all went to the Choctaw Casino after dinner and I put some pennies in a slot.  Eighteen pennies in and $30.20 out!  Icing on the Cake!
 

 
Sherman, Texas has a Golden Corral which was really good the last time we were there.  This time it was not.  There won't be a next time.
 
A new one for us was El Pueblo Cafe in Sherman.
 

 
I ordered something different than my standard enchilada and chile relleno.  The chipotle shrimp caught my eye.  They were great!
 

 
One of the family members ordered loaded nachos and I had to take a picture of it.  Not the nachos that I'm used to.  Just one flat torilla and I believe it was a flour tortilla.
 

 
Next on my must have list was Sonic.  You heard it right.  It would take me over an hour to get to my nearest Sonic and it's not a destination place to say the least.  I go there for the drinks (Lemon Cream Slush and Cherry Limeade) but to eat I had a footlong.
 

 
A few bites and I pulled the hot dog out of the bun and ate the bun with mustard and grilled onions.  My drinks (yes, I order two) did the job!
 
Drove down to Plano, Texas one day to take Sharon's daughter out for her birthday.  Went back to Norma's.  I'd remembered the macaroni and cheese being spectacular.  A side of macaroni and to balance the calorie scale I ordered the wedge salad.  I think I was wrong about the macaroni and cheese.  It was good, but not spectacular.
 

 

 
We were there on Monday.  Wednesday was National Pie Day and they were giving away a free slice with lunch.  Two days too early!  No pie for us.  They only serve cream pies.
 

 
Next up was a steak dinner at Texas Roadhouse.  We were taken out and there was seventeen of us.  I had a ribeye covered with onion petals.  Can't complain as it was just how I like it.
 

 
Served with my steak was an amazing sweet potato.
 

 
Next on my list was Huck's for Catfish.
 

 
There was some interesting catfish art inside.
 

 
Huck's never disappoints.  I ordered the combo with fried shrimp and could hardly finish it all.
 

 
This time we split one dessert between four of us.  Peach Cobbler.  I think this one was the best.
 

 
We drove down to Waco to visit with a friend.  She took us to one of Waco's oldest restaurants.
 

 
The Elite, established in 1919. 
 

 
I let the menu sway me.  I'd never heard of the famous Texas Ranch Casserole.  Although quite tasty it was a bit rich for me.  Chunks of chicken, onion, chiles and tortilla chips baked with several types of cheese in a tortilla shell.
 
I forgot to mention the butter.  Yes, the butter that was served with the basket of rolls and corn bread muffins.  The butter was topped with toasted coconut.
 

 
The others all ordered the same thing....  chicken fingers.  There must have been two breasts on each plate.  They all swooned over their meals.
 

 
On the way home our dinner meal was to be had in Pecos, Texas which is the home of the World's First Rodeo.
 

 

 
I had no idea where to eat in Pecos and the motel clerk was of no help.  I figured I couldn't go wrong with Mexican food and Googled Mexican restaurants in Pecos.  First up and it had 4 out of 5 stars was Alfredo's.
 

 
I was stunned by the parking lot.  It was full and it was full of trucks.  Mine was the only car in the lot.
 
The restaurant was also full of people and we had to wait a minute or two to get seated.  I was hoping that they might be influenced by proximity to New Mexico and I was happy to see that they offered both red and green sauce.  Perfect...  I ordered two enchiladas, one with red and one with green sauce.  The taco wasn't important.  It was the sauce I was after.
 
 
 
 
#1
    pnwchef

    • Total Posts: 2230
    • Joined: 3/16/2011
    • Location: Kennewick, WA
    Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sat, 02/2/13 7:09 PM (permalink)
    WOW Mar, looks like a fun trip, I see your eating well. I think you were ready for this trip, happy you and Sharon had fun. The food looks great....Bill
     
    #2
      mar52

      • Total Posts: 7593
      • Joined: 4/17/2005
      • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
      Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sat, 02/2/13 7:16 PM (permalink)
      (My computer crashed!)
       

       
      The next day was one for the books.
       
      We drove to the Welcome to Pecos sign for some pictures and it was a dust storm. I got out of the car for a minute which was a mistake because I got sand in my eyes. So we hit the road. It was really a challenge to keep the car in the lane it was so windy.  Then it changed... It started to rain and then the rain got really strange because it stuck to the window. Sharon said that it was sleet.  It was great! Then it changed.. There were white flecks flying every which way in front of the car. Sharon said it was snow!!! Then it got harder! There were white flurries that I had to drive through. They looked really cool flying in teams across the road in front of me.  Swirls of snow! Then we hit a huge tumbleweed that stuck to the car. It was a dense one and Sharon had to get out and pull it off the car. Good thing we had gloves in the car. Then it snowed some more! I thought that was exciting and scary at the same time. Then we had some pretty good weather although it was still windy. Then came the major zero visibility sand storm. OMG! We couldn't see the Semi in front of us. I was using that semi as a crutch. When he put on his brakes I knew it wasn't going to be fun.  At least I couldn't see for only a minute or two.  Scary! There was wind a good part of the day and we saw all types of weather.
       
      The sunset in Arizona was a nice touch to end a great trip.
       

       
      We stopped at Shield's Date Garden on our final drive home.  This time I ordered the date ice cream.  The shake is much better than the ice cream.
       
      I didn't taste the dates at all.  It was more of a vanilla...  a bad vanilla.
       

       
      #3
        mar52

        • Total Posts: 7593
        • Joined: 4/17/2005
        • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
        Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sat, 02/2/13 7:17 PM (permalink)
        Sorry about the size of some of the pictures.  Odd as they were all taken the same way.
         
        We'll probably make that same trip in another year or so.  I hope we take I40 the next time!
         
        #4
          mr chips

          • Total Posts: 4715
          • Joined: 2/19/2003
          • Location: portland, OR
          Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sat, 02/2/13 7:17 PM (permalink)
          Looks like great food. Tucson is my favorite road food city and i hope to get back for a sonoran dog. I liked dernnison because it is Eisenhower's birthplace and the day i visited i went to the Samy rayburn library and home and to the house that has been used as South fork on Dallas. Thanks for sharing your adventure Marlene.
           
          #5
            mar52

            • Total Posts: 7593
            • Joined: 4/17/2005
            • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
            Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sat, 02/2/13 7:20 PM (permalink)
            Thanks, Bill.  Would you believe we squeezed all that eating in to just a couple of weeks, one taken up by driving?
             
             
             
            #6
              mar52

              • Total Posts: 7593
              • Joined: 4/17/2005
              • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
              Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sat, 02/2/13 7:29 PM (permalink)
              Thanks, Jim.
               
              On our last trip to Denison we visited the home Eisenhower was born in.  There is now a huge bust of him on the highway.
               
              #7
                ScreamingChicken

                • Total Posts: 4712
                • Joined: 11/5/2004
                • Location: Stoughton, WI
                Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sat, 02/2/13 9:56 PM (permalink)
                mar52


                On our last trip to Denison we visited the home Eisenhower was born in.  There is now a huge bust of him on the highway.
                Doesn't it cause traffic problems?
                 
                I noticed you hadn't been around much and now I know why.  Looks like overall you had a good trip and were able to fit in the stops that you wanted to make, with mostly hits and just a few misses.  Would the people at Jones Bar-B-Que mind if I took that pan of butter back to my table and just ate it with a spoon?
                 
                #8
                  mar52

                  • Total Posts: 7593
                  • Joined: 4/17/2005
                  • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
                  Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sat, 02/2/13 10:10 PM (permalink)
                  Brad, I don't see why not... it's there for your use. 
                  Wouldn't you use a butter knife?  
                   
                  #9
                    ann peeples

                    • Total Posts: 8317
                    • Joined: 5/21/2006
                    • Location: West Allis, Wisconsin
                    Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 10:10 AM (permalink)
                    Nice report, Mar! You sure hit a mix of restaurants AND weather!
                     
                    #10
                      chewingthefat

                      • Total Posts: 6093
                      • Joined: 11/22/2007
                      • Location: Emmitsburg, Md.
                      Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 12:28 PM (permalink)
                      Great report Mar! Very good pics!!
                       
                      #11
                        1bbqboy

                        • Total Posts: 4542
                        • Joined: 11/20/2000
                        • Location: Rogue Valley
                        Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 3:06 PM (permalink)
                        Southern Californians encountering snow! That must have been an eye opener!
                        I don't think I've ever seen a baked potato served with BBQ. Just seems wrong.
                        <message edited by 1bbqboy on Sun, 02/3/13 3:18 PM>
                         
                        #12
                          buffetbuster

                          Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 3:34 PM (permalink)
                          Very nice Mar!  That pie case is unbelievable!
                           
                          There must be more than one El Guero Canelo, because that's not the one I have visited.  Love those Sonoran dogs!
                           
                          #13
                            Texascajun

                            • Total Posts: 115
                            • Joined: 3/5/2012
                            • Location: Lone Star, TX
                            Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 3:55 PM (permalink)
                            Most BBQ places here serve baked (smoked) potatoes. I prefer them to potato salad especially with topped with chopped beef and bbq sauce.
                             
                            #14
                              ScreamingChicken

                              • Total Posts: 4712
                              • Joined: 11/5/2004
                              • Location: Stoughton, WI
                              Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 4:14 PM (permalink)
                              mar52


                              Brad, I don't see why not... it's there for your use. 
                              Wouldn't you use a butter knife?
                              A spoon holds more.  But the knife could be used to fend off interlopers.
                               
                              #15
                                agnesrob

                                • Total Posts: 1790
                                • Joined: 6/4/2006
                                • Location: Park Ridge, NJ
                                Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 4:46 PM (permalink)
                                Great report Marlene! My Niece lives in Plano, Tx. I will see if she knows about Norma's or Texas Roadhouse.
                                 
                                #16
                                  1bbqboy

                                  • Total Posts: 4542
                                  • Joined: 11/20/2000
                                  • Location: Rogue Valley
                                  Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 4:59 PM (permalink)
                                  Texascajun


                                  Most BBQ places here serve baked (smoked) potatoes. I prefer them to potato salad especially with topped with chopped beef and bbq sauce.

                                  BBQ is supposed to be served with french fries.  I thought everyone knew that.
                                   
                                  #17
                                    mar52

                                    • Total Posts: 7593
                                    • Joined: 4/17/2005
                                    • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
                                    Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 5:04 PM (permalink)
                                    BB, I think there are two El Guero Canelo locations.  We went to the one on N. Oracle.
                                     
                                    I liked the option of a baked potato with the ribs.  Seemed healthier than the other choices even though I loaded it up with butter.
                                     
                                    What was interesting at Jones Family Barbecue was that dessert was one of the offered sides in the combo plate.
                                     
                                    Brad, I saw stuffed interlopers in the Texas gift stores.  I don't think they attack.
                                     
                                    #18
                                      NYPIzzaNut

                                      • Total Posts: 3127
                                      • Joined: 3/8/2008
                                      • Location: Sardinia, OH
                                      Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 5:16 PM (permalink)
                                      Muy bueno - muchas gracias!!
                                       
                                      #19
                                        kland01s

                                        • Total Posts: 2835
                                        • Joined: 3/14/2003
                                        • Location: Fox River Valley, IL
                                        Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 5:39 PM (permalink)
                                        agnesrob


                                        Great report Marlene! My Niece lives in Plano, Tx. I will see if she knows about Norma's or Texas Roadhouse.

                                         
                                        As far as I know Texas Roadhouse is a chain. Have them here in Illinois.
                                         
                                        #20
                                          mar52

                                          • Total Posts: 7593
                                          • Joined: 4/17/2005
                                          • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
                                          Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 5:52 PM (permalink)
                                          Texas Roadhouse is definitely a Midwest chain.
                                           
                                          Loud, crowded and the steak I had wasn't bad at all.
                                           
                                          #21
                                            1bbqboy

                                            • Total Posts: 4542
                                            • Joined: 11/20/2000
                                            • Location: Rogue Valley
                                            Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 5:55 PM (permalink)
                                            That's where to have a baked potato
                                             
                                            #22
                                              Texascajun

                                              • Total Posts: 115
                                              • Joined: 3/5/2012
                                              • Location: Lone Star, TX
                                              Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Sun, 02/3/13 11:37 PM (permalink)
                                              No french fries for me. I prefer beans, turnip greens or smoked potato. To each his own though. Great report Mar I enjoyed it.
                                               
                                              #23
                                                Foodbme

                                                • Total Posts: 9527
                                                • Joined: 9/1/2006
                                                • Location: Gilbert, AZ
                                                Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Mon, 02/4/13 12:54 AM (permalink)
                                                buffetbuster

                                                Very nice Mar!  That pie case is unbelievable!
                                                There must be more than one El Guero Canelo, because that's not the one I have visited.  Love those Sonoran dogs!

                                                Great Report Mar and yes, there are 2 El Guero Canelo locations. The one Mar went to is the Modern, "Sterile" one.
                                                The one you're talking about BB is the original one in South Tucson. The Original has much more "Character" and I think the dogs taste better there. 
                                                 
                                                 
                                                 
                                                <message edited by Foodbme on Mon, 02/4/13 1:10 AM>
                                                 
                                                #24
                                                  ellen4641

                                                  • Total Posts: 3531
                                                  • Joined: 5/1/2004
                                                  • Location: Egg Harbor Township, NJ
                                                  Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Wed, 02/20/13 10:18 PM (permalink)
                                                  Hi Mar,
                                                  Gr8 report!!!  You scored some home runs with that Chiptotle Shrimp, Sonoran Hot Dog, and nicely crusted beef ribs !  I-10 & I-20 don't seem that lacking to me, being YOU seem to find whatever good stuff is out there.  Tho, I think u meant that there are plenty of barren, foodless, stretches .   I remember u posting your Sonoran Dog on Hot Dog Nation page on Facebook.  Benzee liked your pic so much that he made it the cover photo for a few days or so :)
                                                  Golden Corral can really vary by location, & time of day, etc.   There's one that opened up by me,  a year & 1/2 ago.  (so, I never eat at the Corral when I'm traveling anymore, since I can get it right here).  It hits the spot , every so often, for a good  salad, & a hot charbroiled steak off the grill.   And, don't forget their delish Indian corn bread pudding!   I don't feel the need to pig out there these days, as I know what I like, so I usually just keep it pretty simple. 
                                                  I just stopped there tonight , for a quick meal,  on the way home from my gym workout.  I've seen posts where people mock Golden Corral , without ever having even tried it .  The burger sliders are also real good , served at lunchtime.

                                                  Those creme pies look good, tho who needs ALL that whipped cream, LOL ?!
                                                  (as much as I love whipped cream!!)
                                                  Your baked potato that came with the ribs looks SO good, the way the butter is melted in there :)

                                                  Beautiful Arizona sunset !!!


                                                   
                                                  #25
                                                    ChrisOC

                                                    • Total Posts: 901
                                                    • Joined: 7/9/2008
                                                    • Location: Ocean City, NJ
                                                    Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Thu, 02/21/13 12:19 PM (permalink)
                                                    Hey Ellen.  Haven't seen you in a while!
                                                     
                                                    #26
                                                      ann peeples

                                                      • Total Posts: 8317
                                                      • Joined: 5/21/2006
                                                      • Location: West Allis, Wisconsin
                                                      Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Thu, 02/21/13 3:03 PM (permalink)
                                                      Hi, Ellen!
                                                       
                                                       
                                                      #27
                                                        love2bake

                                                        • Total Posts: 1269
                                                        • Joined: 8/10/2008
                                                        • Location: SFBay Area, CA
                                                        Re:I10 I20 are lacking! Thu, 02/21/13 6:17 PM (permalink)
                                                        Wow!!!  I'm catching up on trip reports because I stopped looking at any while I was dieting.    But I'm done now and drooling over these pics.  What I want most (in no particular order) are the baked sweet potato with toasted marshmallows on top, the catfish platter and cobbler, the ribs, the butter topped with toasted coconut, and the chipotle shrimp.  Mmmm!!!  And that Arizona sky was gorgeous.  Wonderful pics and report.    Btw, I've had some very good food in Tucson and Las Cruces.  If you make this trip again, let us all know!  Also, I stop at Sonics a lot when I'm traveling with dogs--it's nice to be able to sit in my car in the shade and eat without having to leave them.
                                                        <message edited by love2bake on Thu, 02/21/13 6:25 PM>
                                                         
                                                        #28
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