Food

Best things we ate this week: Lamb wot, lemon meringue pie, and fried chicken

The higher the meringue the closer to God, right?

Comfort food seems to be the unintentional theme for this week’s roundup of the best things we ate and drank. The standouts were a classic lemon meringue pie from one of the oldest restaurants in Fort Worth, Ethiopian lamb wot with injera and collard greens, crispy fried chicken, and a reset button in the form of a mocktail.

Did you eat or drink something recently that was so good it compelled you to send it to the group chat or post it online? I want to hear about it. Email me at cballor@dallasnews.com or find me on Twitter.

Lemon meringue pie from Carshon’s Deli

The lemon meringue pie at Carshon's Deli in Fort Worth is a favorite among regulars.
The lemon meringue pie at Carshon's Deli in Fort Worth is a favorite among regulars.(Sarah Blaskovich/Staff)

I didn’t expect such a fancy hairdo on my slice of lemon meringue pie from Carshon’s Deli. I stopped into this down-home deli to see how the third-oldest restaurant in Fort Worth was holding up after being open since 1928. The pies are still stacked high and made by owner Mary Swift, who has operated the deli since 1982. The lemon meringue, a personal favorite, was just right. The restaurant was studded with regulars, including one generous gentleman who spotted me $5 when I hadn’t remembered that Carshon’s was cash only. I’ll bring an extra $5 next time so nobody has to go without pie. This place is too sweet to skip dessert. Sarah Blaskovich, senior food reporter

Carshon’s Deli is at 3133 Cleburne Road, Fort Worth. Cash only! carshonsdeli.com.

Fried chicken from Mike’s Chicken

Fried chicken tenders from Mike's Chicken on Forest Lane in Dallas
Fried chicken tenders from Mike's Chicken on Forest Lane in Dallas(Claire Ballor)

On a particularly hectic day this week, I reached for an old favorite — Mike’s Chicken. It was my first time at the newish location of the mom-and-pop fried chicken restaurant, and I ordered the classic tenders with fries and mac ’n’ cheese (I do eat vegetables, for the record). In a society that values convenience at the expense of quality, even when it comes to food, Mike’s Chicken is a gentle reminder that you can have both. Yes, you have to get out of your car and walk inside to get your food, but it usually comes out quickly and it’s always good. I think it’s some of the best fried chicken in Dallas, and the sides and sauces are noteworthy, too. Claire Ballor, food reporter

Mike’s Chicken has two Dallas locations, one on Maple Avenue and another on Forest Lane. mikeschicken.co.

Lamb wot combo at Abeba Foods To Go

The lamb wot combo plate at Abeba Foods To Go in Dallas' Vickery Meadow
The lamb wot combo plate at Abeba Foods To Go in Dallas' Vickery Meadow(Amanda Albee)

You would never know that a small import market in Vickery Meadow called Abeba Foods To Go doubles as a restaurant unless you use Google Maps to discover new places to eat, as I sometimes do. Inside, there is no menu — it’s only available online. But ask for some tibs or doro wot at the counter, and within minutes, you’ll hear pans rumbling and the sizzling sounds of a stove firing up from behind a curtain.

Often when I go out to eat, I look for something I’m unable to cook at home. The spongelike carb that acts as plate and cutlery in Ethiopian cuisine, injera, counts as one of those things. At Abeba, it absorbs richly seasoned meats covered in spiced butter, like the lamb wot combo with scrambled eggs I had one morning between breakfast and lunch. Tender chunks of lamb were seasoned with berbere, an Ethiopian spice blend, along with onion, garlic, ginger, jalapeños and a side of collard greens. The entire plate filled my senses, covered my fingers and deeply satisfied my appetite. Amanda Albee, contributing writer

Abeda Foods To Go is at 6882 Shady Brook Lane, Dallas.

Gingerade kombucha detox mocktail

This kombucha mocktail is the perfect vacation detox.
This kombucha mocktail is the perfect vacation detox.(Tina Danze)

After indulging in cocktails and wine on vacation, my body wants a detox. My palate still craves tasty, elevated sips, though. My go-to mocktail satisfied both demands last week. The drink’s base is GT’s Synergy Gingerade raw kombucha; it’s an effervescent drink made with fresh ginger juice, kiwi juice and tea, fermented with 9 billion — yes, BILLION — living probiotics. I pour about 4 ounces of kombucha into a glass, along with 4 ounces of fresh-squeezed orange juice and about 4 ounces flavored sparkling water (lime, orange, mango or whatever’s on hand). The garnish is sliced orange, lime or serrano pepper — all three if I have them — plus a sprig of basil or mint. Ice is optional.

In truth, I have no hard rules for ingredient proportions. They vary with my mood. Some days, I skip the juice and go heavier on the sparkling water. In the early days of the pandemic, when I first made the drink, I sweetened it with agave syrup, which I find unnecessary now. Although kombucha wasn’t on my pre-pandemic radar, I found the funky fermented flavor ideal for adding complexity to mocktails (full disclosure: That fermentation lends a trace amount of alcohol — less than 0.5%). — Tina Danze, contributing writer

GT’s Synergy Gingerade raw kombucha is available at most supermarkets.

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