Scratching my head like a confused teenager staring at a bio-chemistry set wondering why Balompie charges an extra 55 cent per pupusa for dining in? Take-out containers are an extra expense to the restaurant’s bottom line and it encourages patrons to take-out (and it’s not very green.)
Nonetheless, I dined at Balompie because pupusas squished in a paper bag is not very appetizing. They have two tables outdoor and since I had my dog, I was able to enjoy his company, the weather, and food.
Balompie offers a large selection of pupusa including unconventional fillings such as prosciutto. My #32 Pupusa on 7x7 Magazine – 100 Things to try before you die in San Francisco list of choice was fish and pork.
The pupusa are made to order because during the 20 minute wait I peered into the window. The lady behind the counter; roll, pat and fried my tantalizing pockets of cheese. The pupusa were soft on the outside with a very slender amount of dough so the star of the show was the goodies inside. A generous amount of filling with strings of cheese oozing everywhere as I pulled my disc apart. The pupusas are served with a very sour crunchy coleslaw, a nice contrast of texture when eaten together.
I do not stray from ordering Chili Renellos when on a menu. I have fond memories of my introduction to the dish. My college roommate’s aunt would send her care packages weekly and her signature dish is Chili Renellos. Love at first bite, fried greasy crust, cheesy goodness stuffed in a big green pepper.
There is a choice between carne and cheese stuffed Chili Renellos. I got the carne Chili Renellos served with 2 plain pupusas, salpicon (braised meat), casaminto (a version of beans and rice) and a house salad. The dish was a little cold and I assume was done before the pupusa but they waited to run the food together. The chili was stuffed plump with the meat and the flavors of the carne and tomato-base sauce worked well. I made a pupusa “taco” using the salpicon, casaminto, salsa and plain pupusa. A mad bargain at $10.50, enough for two people.
Balompie Cafe #3
3801 Mission St.
San Francisco, CA 94110