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Oct 6, 1999 09:10 AM

Don Paco's In Carle Place - Papusas

  • b

Have been making a weeklly journey to Don Paco's Restaurante in Carle Place for Papusas and Enchilladas. Small coffee shop style storefront with seating for about 15 to 20 and very good food and very friendly service. It is a place I go during lunch time to escape and read the paper while I get some wonderful food

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  1. j
    jonathan sibley

    Where is Carle Place, please?

    16 Replies
    1. re: jonathan sibley

      Carle Place is in central Nassau County. It is bordered by Westbury, Old Westbury, & Mineola. Not far from Roosevelt Field, Nassau Coliseum, etc...

      1. re: BillL

        What are they? (Please excuse my culinary ignorance.)

        1. re: christina z

          I think this is a question that we need Mr. Leff to answer. I like them, I eat them, but I do not know how to describe them. Kind of shaped like a potato pancake, but they are doughy on the outside with meat and/or cheese on the inside. Eaten with cole slaw, or plain and/or hot sauce. Jim, please help me out on this one.

          1. re: BillL

            Pupusas are the most popular snack food of El Salvador, thick masa patties stuffed with cooked pork skin, cheese, or both, then cooked until crisp on a dry griddle. I like the cheese mixed with the Salvadoran flower buds called loroco. Pupusas are always served with a squirt bottle of mild tomato sauce and a communal jar of spicy pickled cabbage, or curtido. One is a snack; two a light meal. And if you suspect your pupusa isn't being made to order, if you don't hear slapping noises from back in the kitchen, run, don't walk to another restaurant.

            1. re: j gold

              I work in Garden City -- might you favor us with an address?

              1. re: bluefrog

                An address for WHAT?

                1. re: Jim Leff

                  I think they wanted address for Don Paco's in Carle Place

                  1. re: Phil

                    Thanks, Phil -- I was beginning to think Jim started in the middle of this thread.

                    Yup -- the address for the establishment described at the beginning.

                    1. re: bluefrog

                      "I was beginning to think Jim started in the middle of this thread."

                      actually, the problem was that you piped up in the middle of a thread that had long since digressed away from the restaurant you were apparently asking about...and you were asking Jonathan--who was responding in a general way to a digression about pupusas--for the address of a restaurant that had been discussed by others days earlier.

                      If you'd taken time to find and reply to the original thread starter, it might have been clearer what your query was about. But then again, you might also spent that same time calling information.....

                      1. re: Jim Leff

                        Not to beat a dead horse -- but I usually try to read an entire thread, especially if I have been away for a few days. I have found, more on other Boards than here, that someone chimes in early, without realizing that the point has been made elsewhere. But, then, as you pointed out, we do have the chance to connect our response to individual posts rather than the thread as a whole. Sorry if I got a bit testy, but in context, my original question did seem rather logical.

                        BTW -- you might want to suggest that posting an address would be a useful addition to a comment on a particular restaurant -- this is entirely consistent with the philosophy of sharing information publicly.

                        I seem to recall several discussions in the past where you or others have raised questions.

                        1. re: bluefrog

                          yeah, it'd be better if people would post address/phone info. But I don't want to get too insistent about stuff like that, because 1. people are here to have fun and I don't want to burden them with requirements, and 2. the more organized people feel they must be in order to post, the less likely they are to do so.

                          My feeling is that even a rushed, vague post like "great muffins: Frank's in Stamford" is more useful than no tip at all, y'know? (I hope all you "lurkers" out there bear this in mind and pitch into discussions when you have suggestions!)

                          And, again, it's awfully easy to simply call information (or use the free 'net yellow pages link below) if you know name and city. That's the easy part.


                          1. re: Jim Leff
                            jonathan sibley

                            all true, but in a "tri-state" bulletin board, for example, a restaurant with no town, or with a lesser-known town and no state makes it a little more difficult to track down the restaurant other than know that it's "probably not around where I live".

                            The fact that a restaurant is in a town I haven't heard of and isn't right around the corner doesn't rule it out, if I can figure out where it is.

                            That is why sometimes it is helpful for us to ask posters to be more specific about what they have found. To clarify, I'm not suggesting rules, just explaining why there are sometimes questions like "where is that?"

                            1. re: jonathan sibley

                              "in a "tri-state" bulletin board, for example, a restaurant with no town, or with a lesser-known town and no state makes it a little more difficult to track down the restaurant"

                              agreed, but you're preaching to the converted!

                              1. re: Jim Leff

                                Sorry Gang,
                                In the future I will give a town, region or address of a find. I was scared to do it as it might seem as if I was advertising or hawking a particular place. Sorry for the confusion. I did answer an E-Mail asking for an address and phone number.

            2. re: BillL

              Jonathan gave you a good answer, but let me approach from a different angle.

              As you go south from Mexico City, corny/bready things get thicker. First, of course, are tortillas. Then, toward the south in Yucatan, there are panuchos (which are like thicker tortillas, stuffed with stuff, often with black beans worked into the filler). You can get 'em at Gabriella's in Manhattan (though not super authentic). Then El Salvador has pupusas, which are thicker still (though still far from fat), and stuffed, classically, with minced pork and pork skin (chicharron), cheese (queso), or both mixed together (revuelta). there are fancier pupusas out there with all sorts of fillings, but these are the basic three.

              In Venezuela there are arepas, which are thicker still, and stuffed with stuff (classically, the slow-cooked brisket called "carne mechada"). Then comes Columbia, whose arepas are thickest of all and are never stuffed (they put things like cheese or sausage on top and/or alongside).

              I've almost certainly left out all sorts of intermediary steps, but that's the basic schematic....

              Back to pupusas...they come with shredded cabbage which should be delicious (this separates good pupusarias from bad), and you should always drink beer with them. Use the cabbage and hot sauce in any way you wish to break up the monotony. And make sure they're very hot (temperature-wise). As with pizza, your mouth should burn from the heat. What a great snack.

              Oh, one thing....east coast pupusas NEVER serve spicy cabbage...slightly pickled, yes, but no spice at all. Is this a regional variation, Jonathan?


              1. re: Jim Leff

                I am embarrassed to admit that I've never tasted an East Coast pupusa. After living more than 20 years in and around Salvadoran neighborhoods in Los Angeles, I've just sort of taken them for granted. I must, I suppose remedy this now than I'm living in NYC--although if the Salvadoran restaurants are half as awful as the local Mexican places I've been to since moving here, it's going to be a hard row to hoe.