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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Los Planes de Renderos: Face-Smearing Pupusas in the Excelsior

Posted By on Thu, Aug 26, 2010 at 10:55 AM

Los Planes de Renderos' upstairs "dining room" might be one of the best places in the city to hide out. - ALEX HOCHMAN
  • Alex Hochman
  • Los Planes de Renderos' upstairs "dining room" might be one of the best places in the city to hide out.
Not many sub-$2 meals satisfy us more than the pupusa revuelta at tiny Los Planes de Renderos in the Excelsior. A thick corn tortilla is stuffed with shredded pork, refried beans, and mejillo (a soft, mild cheese), then griddled on both sides to a golden hue. From the first bite, you appreciate the skill of the griddle master, overseeing 20 to 30 pupusas in a cramped kitchen during the lunch rush. She nails the exterior every time, keeping it crisp while retaining the flavor of corn. Though the cheese goes a way to cutting the saltiness of the pork, you'll still want a glass of water handy.

It isn't really a pupusa unless it dribbles down your face. - ALEX HOCHMAN
  • Alex Hochman
  • It isn't really a pupusa unless it dribbles down your face.

You'll also want a napkin. We don't feel we've truly experienced a pupusa revuelta until a stream of beans, cheese and grease slowly dribbles down our cheek. Served alongside is a bottomless bowl of curtido, the tart, vinegary cabbage slaw that reminds us of a less funkified kimchi. Included in the $1.70 tariff is one of the best hiding places in the city, the upstairs "dining room." Your boss, spouse, or whoever you're running from at the moment will never, ever find you. Might as well order another pupusa.

Los Planes de Renderos: 12 Persia Ave. (at Mission), 585-8645.

Read more from Alex Hochman at Urban Stomach. Follow us on Twitter at @sfoodie

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Alex Hochman

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