Friday, April 17, 2015

XPL Truck

Ever since I started working at my new job, I couldn't find a go-to street meat place. I walked by several Rafiqi's trucks and a couple sidewalk carts that looked like they got no turnover so I never wanted to risk trying them. Then one day one of my coworkers mentioned that he used to visit XPL Halal truck up on 43rd St and 2nd Ave. I'd heard about them as they have consistently been rated as having the best rice of any street meat purveyor in the city. I've visited them several times now so I'll give some opinions on everything I've tried.

My first trip happened to fall while M and I had decided to give up red meat so I got the chicken over rice with white sauce and hot sauce. Normally I would get the chicken and lamb over rice, but sacrifices are sacrifices. After trying their food this first time I understood why it was so hyped. The rice is just flavored so differently and so well compared to most other vendors. The chicken is seasoned very well and adds the right amount of salt and spices to the fluffy, flavored rice. The salad is a typical salad. The white sauce and hot sauce are fairly standard as well, but overall the food here is really good. I was really looking forward to trying the lamb after our self-imposed sacrifice.

For my second trip I was able to try out the chicken and lamb over rice with white sauce and hot sauce. The lamb was a bit saltier than I would normally prefer from street vendors, but it had some really good char/crisp to the thinner parts. I liked this, but moving forward I made the decision that I would stick to just the chicken moving forward.

This week I promised to take a coworker to XPL as he was always wondering where I was getting the awesome smelling food. While we were waiting to order a lady in front of us got a chicken and vegetables over rice with white sauce and green sauce. First, chicken and vegetables? She was talking to the lady behind her (one person in front of me) and noted that it was chickpeas and other vegetables. Second, green sauce?! Visions of Omar's green sauce at Little Morocco danced through my head, but the more I thought about it, the more I figured it would be more like s'rug like you might get from Taim.

I had to order this after hearing about it, and I was very pleased that I did. The vegetables are a great addition to the already tasty chicken. The green sauce isn't incredibly flavorful so I think I'll go back to just white sauce and hot sauce, but it was good to try it out. I'm pretty sure I'm going to stick with the chicken and vegetables from now on, though.

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