February 02, 2008

bakesale betty's fried chicken sandwich

We take a break from our overdue Hawaii programming to bring you an update from Oakland, CA where i am visiting my pal R. Today we went to the farmer's market and ate a bunch of free samples (especially the breads and spreads at the Afghani prepared foods booth, YUM), bought some gorgeously cheese-tastic pastry at Arizmendi, and went for a walk through the attractively early-20th-century architecture of R's neighborhood, including a spur-of-the-moment visit to a house for sale that either of us would have bought on the spot if we had a spare $800,000.

By then we were hungry again, and we headed across town to Bakesale Betty's. They have cookies and cakes, but we got fried chicken sandwiches. These somehow embody the city of Oakland to me: soul food fried chicken, on artisanal bread, with crispy crunchy fresh slaw and no mayo. They were so damn good. The chicken is boneless but otherwise strictly traditional, moist with thick, crisp, spicy crust. The slaw is full of parsley and jalapenos, giving it just a little kick and a crunchy cabbagey sweetness and a touch of vinegar. It doesn't need mayo, and in my opinion, nearly everything could stand a little mayo. Mayo would push this sandwich over the edge into decadence, and somehow at the same time would make it more pedestrian.

We gobbled up every bite. Highly recommended.

Posted by foodnerd at February 2, 2008 11:14 PM
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