No Fair Food
Welp, Zozobra burned (more like Faux-Zobra) and everyone we ever met jumped online to be like “Isn’t it amazing how they streamed and/or broadcasted it this year?!” even though they do they every year. And while we admit that it didn’t feel quite right, we’re still down with a Catholic town that goes full-on Pagan once a year, especially with the cleansing fire of cleansing fire.
But we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out the part that disappointed us most, namely that the Santa Fe Plaza and its surrounding streets weren’t lined with booths offering up things like funnel cake and Indian tacos and, like, a big ol' turkey leg one can eat to feel like an effing viking or something. Also corn.
Oh, sure, there’s a new food truck in town called Saya’s that does Indian tacos (and we hear it’s AMAZING), and there’s no shortage of funnel cake recipes online, but with events canceled across the land these days, where’s one supposed to find said turkey leg? Or how do you get a deep fried Twinkie without having to invest a bunch of money into your home kitchen?
For some of us, we try to eat OK most of the time, but we cheat during festival season. This isn’t to say we blindly embrace everything Zozobra (the origin story is tied up in the whitewashing of history) or Santa Fe Fiestas (we’re really glad the Entrada was abolished—not because we hate pageantry, but because the whole idea of a bloodless re-conquest is gross and simply not true). In other words, it’s not so much the activities themselves we’re missing, it’s the freaking food.
There are some other workaround things, though, such as the incredible Sioux Chef, which works to rekajigger and redefine the concept of Indigenous foods; and it’s not hard to find yourself a 12-pack of massive turkey legs. Still, sometimes the best dang thing one can eat is the thing someone else made. We know, we know—something about the “power of cooking for yourself...” Yada. Yada. Yada. We miss the fair foods today. We might not always, but today, it’s a challenge.
Oh, and here’s a recipe for watermelon juice. It’s not hard, but it’s refreshing as heck. Also you can add booze.
-In case you’ve missed it, most restaurants are reopening—outdoors and indoors—of late after Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said they could do that at 25% capacity. We’re not about to kick off a whole 'nother list, but if you like a place, call it and ask what’s up.
-Fork Fan Lisa F. runs the fantastic @haydenfold Instagram account featuring Hayden the Scottish Fold, and she also sent us this very important photo of a new food truck in town:
-Fork readers from around the globe described our previous newsletter as “exhausting,” we wish to extend our sympathies that something so innocuous was such a hardship for these readers. Might we recommend upping your iron and protein intakes? Speaking with a doctor? It’s been a while since med school, but we’re pretty sure super-rad newsletters about cool jokes shouldn’t be making you tired. Maybe it’s Epstein-Barr? Our mom has that.
-There’s a new Thai spot in Eldorado called Thai Bistro and we know a lot of you have been wondering where to get Thai food around there. You get it there. There’s another place on Zafarano called Thai Café Noodles & Treats, and that one has reportedly won the Thai Select award from the Thai Minister of Commerce three dang times.
-Cordova Road bakery Dulce (get the banana tart, trust us) has once again changed hands with ownership going to longtime employee Molly Martinez and her husband Armando. According to what we’ve seen on social media, all the things you know and love will still be there (w/the same recipes), as will some new items.
-Lastly in local food jazz, do you remember when SFR featured Rose’s Kitchen? Well, its proprietor Ilana Blankman has joined with performers like Elise Soutwick, Lone Piñon and Z Loco for Dinner on the Farm, an evening of food and entertainment with pairings from Vinos Bravos. It all goes down on Sept. 17. Since Rose’s Kitchen sits on the Reunity Resources Farm, you KNOW it’s gonna be fresh and you KNOW it’s gonna rule. At $135 per person, it may not be for everyone, but the locale is gorgeous and the four courses of ALL LOCALLY SOURCED FOOD is gonna rule. Space is limited and this is a COVID-safe event, so if you’re not willing to consider your fellow humans, just skip it. We’re betting this will sell out fast, so hurry and click that “Dinner on the Farm” link!
-Chances are, some of your friends have taken to the world of social media to bemoan the loss of certain Taco Bell menu items, most recently the Mexican Pizza. Now, we know as well as anyone that sometimes you’ve just gotta hit the Taco Bell drive-thru at midnight because you’re drunk and are lucky enough to have a designated driver. Lucky for us who live in Santa Fe, though, pretty much any menu item at Taco Bell is done better by a locally owned spot, so...yeah. Of course, we’ll freaking revolt if they ever get rid of the Crunchwrap.
-McDonald’s hasn’t named a menu item after someone since Michael Jordan in the ’90s (around the same time stupid Gina Clayton cut in front of The Fork on a school field trip involving a McD stop during which she won $350,000 in a contest from a sticker on a cup), but rapper Travis Scott is now on the list.
-Target has a new in-house grocery line called Good & Gather, and it will reportedly offer something like 600 items. We’re talking oven pizzas and sauces and, like, mushrooms in a jar and such. Nothing like a mega-chain being all like “It’s artisanal...in spirit.”
-We are very much here for this-here piece from HuffPost Food featuring chef Claudette Zepeda, who reasons that justifying or defending Mexican food is a weird thing because it’s not only amazing, it’s a pretty freaking broad cuisine. Also find info on why the term “authentic” is tricky when it comes to food and why y’all should get that chip off your shoulder about Mexican food jams.
In the print edition of SFR, our boss traveled all the way to the fabled subdivision of Eldorado to sample Thai food, and when that didn’t work out, he tried La Plancha.
A Totally Scientific Breakdown of The Fork’s Correspondence
Number of Letters Received: 41 *Awful lot of auto-replies...y’all OK?
Most Helpful Tip of the Week (a barely edited letter from a reader): “I hate you, Fork.” *Who do you think you are? Our mom?
Actually Helpful Tip: “There’s a box of Reese’s Pieces in the kitchen for you,” *That one’s from our partner, and it was incredibly helpful.
Fair thee well, The Fork
Here’s a full-on album from Old Man Gloom, the metal band with Santa Fe roots that is absolutely named after Zozobra and also RULES.