So, I promised more corn (y) stories from sunny, warm Scottsdale when we arrived. Yes, our favorite restaurant here, Los Sombreros, also has several corn specialties. Though my favorite dish here is the plate sized double chili relleno, corn may require further research.
The chef and owner, Azucena Tovar is from San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. In fact, I will be there next month with Carlos and Rina.
Anyway, her signature dish is huitlacoche crepas, thin crispy edged crepes folded around a filling of huitlacoche and cheese, with jewels of pomegranate seeds.
While on the subject of corn, it seems the sun worshipping and plastic surgery enhanced folks here love corn for dessert as well. Republic Ice Cream serves up the best sweet corn ice cream, this side of Manila in the Philippines. Food and Wine says it is the best ice cream spot in the Valley of the Sun. The corn is barbecued, then kernels are cut off the cob. Some are sauteed in butter, and some are candied in sugar. They even make a corn milk by simmering the cobs. The ice cream base is blended with the cooked corm, and the corn milk. Then hand churned by folding in the candied corn. Wow!
So, for a real change of pace, we decided on a healthy, organic lunch at Picazzo in west Sedona. What a pleasant place, with salads, pizza, pasta, and soups in various combinations. Even my ‘broken wedge salad’ had fresh corn in it, as did my white bean and kale (thank you, Hunter Pence) soup. The corn theme is alive and thriving in Sedona.
Just for fun, I bought some skinny pop popcorn for a snack later. But I am anxious to make corn milk next time I have a few extra cobs laying around the kitchen.
Moving on to Scottsdale
It turns out that many spring training venues also have their specialties. Salt River has a new Mega Dog, half a pound topped with green chilimac and cheese, AND pulled pork, for a mere $12. Better to scour the rotating food trucks in center field for lighter fare, like sushi, crepes, or burgers.
Camelback Ranch, the home of the hated Dodgers, has a new mac and cheese with various toppings, the over rated Dodger dog, and the more catchy Wok Off Noodles & Rice.
Goodyear Ballpark, home of the Reds and Indians, touts the Skyline Chili dog, with Ohio born Bertman Ball Park mustard. They also have the carnival inspired funnel cake, frybread, and Nothing Bundt Cake.
Maryvale Baseball Park, home of the Brew Crew, touts Wisconsin Friday Fish Fry, Klement’s Racing Sausage Sampler, and Crispin Mixology, hard apple cider mixed with Leinenkugel. Also, to appease the Cheeseheads are cheese curds, and kettle chips smothered in nacho cheese.
Peoria Sports Complex, home to the Padres and Mariners, has a unique All You Can Eat Deck in right field, for only $20. But what about the beer?
My Giants home for spring, Scottsdale Stadium, has a 22 ounce bomber from Anchor Steam Brewing, and the famous Gilroy garlic fries. But they have a real VIP experience with the Charro Lodge. Does she sit on your lap? It is a mere $90 to $120 per person! I settled for the Giant dog and a beer.
Sloan Park, new home of the Cubbies, has a Taste of Chicago and Windy City Dog, a Red Hot bratwurst, and a Maxwell Street Dog. Also new this year are both Hot Doug’s and Portillo’s brand of dogs. I like Portillo’s chili dog from my previous visits to Chicago. The beverage of choice is a tall boy of Old Style. But left field has a real party atmosphere with the Budweiser Rooftop. And what about some Garrett’s Popcorn, fitting into my corn theme?
Tempe Diablo Stadium, home of the Angels, allows a 16 x 16 inch soft back pack with food from home. Very economical, but what the heck, this is Spring Training, and time for beer and dogs.
Surprise Stadium, home of the Royals, has, you guessed it, grilled corn on the cob, waffle fries, Italian sandwiches, and cheddar muffin dogs. What it really needs is an Arthur Bryant’s like KC itself!
Hohokam Park, new home of the A’s, has Streets of New York pizza, or some Chick-fil-A. I would guess they need some famous Flint’s Barbecue.
Well, I am sick now. I need a real cleanse, about a 30 mile bicycle ride, and a sauna to sweat out the fat. Welcome to Spring Training, Arizona style. The fat doctors must love it!
We have been trying to behave ourselves here. We went to the Scottsdale branch of Picazzo, almost next door to our crappy hotel. The salads are just scrumptious. And their tapioca and rice based pizza dough is better than most traditional versions. We even skipped dessert.
But we have a need for a sushi fix. And the best sushi happy hour is Sakana, over on Indian Bend Road and Hayden. It reminds me of some of the great Los Angeles sushi joints of the 80s. A rather limited menu, but some great sushi and appetizers IF you get there early. We did, we were numero ichi. The calamari and jalapeno tempura were the best!