5 Faves: Big Plates


It’s always a nice surprise when a restaurant dish turns out to be so huge I can eat the other half for lunch the next day. Here’s five big ‘uns I encountered recently:

Huevos Rancheros
La Fiesta Taqueria
This hefty treat (I like mine with chile verde) is served up with rice, beans, guacamole and a small salad – and a pile of corn or flour tortillas. It’s delicious reheated.
1105 Alhambra Boulevard, Sacramento, (916) 454-5616

Guy’s Bloody Mary Flank Steak
Johnnie Garlic’s
Johnny Garlic’s (enormous) juicy grilled flank steak is marinated in a fiesty Bloody Mary mix. Served up with lumpy, comforting garlic and rosemary mashed potatoes and a pretty tumble of summer vegetables, it could easily feed two diners.
10505 Fairway Drive, Roseville, (916) 789-2000; http://www.johnnygarlics.com

Vegetarian Jungle Curry with Tofu
Lemon Grass Noodle Bar and Asian Grill
This bountiful, aromatic dish is too large to finish in one sitting. Mai Pham’s intriguing combination of chickpeas, soft tofu, broccoli and chunks of sweet potatoes (poured on a pile of white rice) is a favorite of mine, especially when it’s cold and blustery outside.
945 Howe Avenue, Sacramento, (916) 920-0974; www.lemongrassrestaurant.com

Sausage Pizza
One Speed
I loved the thin, crackly crust and robust toppings (housemade sausage, mozzarella cheese, silky-sweet bell peppers and pleasingly bitter broccoli rabe) of this terrific pizza. And it was great for breakfast (with a cup of coffee!) the next morning.
4818 Folsom Boulevard, Sacramento, (916) 706-1748; www.onespeedpizza.com

Fried Chicken
Shady Lady Saloon
Sliced up and accompanied by crusty, irresistible discs of mac ‘n cheese (parents, your kids will adore them), and a pile of soft, sweetish collard greens, Shady Lady’s fried chicken is one of its best menu items. If you don’t want to take it home, make sure to share it with your tablemates.
1409 R Street (14th & R), (916) 231-9121; http://www.myspace.com/440672642

Fish Tacos
Farmer’s Kitchen Café
Bristling with crunchy red cabbage and stuffed with tender cod, locally grown torpedo onions and ripe tomato slices, these earthy tacos (two to an order) feature handmade corn tortillas and refreshing clean flavors.
624 4th Street, Davis, (530) 756-1862; www.farmerskitchencafe.com