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Three Dish Sketches from Taco Master Julian Medina

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Welcome to Dish Sketches, a new feature where Eater asks chefs for the drawings they make of their food before they cook it.

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A lot of people come to Julian Medina's restaurants for Mexican staples like tacos, chips and guacamole, empanadas, and arroz con pollo. But the chef also runs a lot of less-traditional specials, to keep things interesting for the regulars. He frequently sketches these new creations, photocopies them, and passes them around to his crew, so that they can have a visual reference when he's not in the kitchen. Here's a look at a few sketches of dishes that just landed on the menu at Yerba Buena on Avenue A.

Arepas De Cochinita:
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Julian Medina, Chef: "I wanted to do a little change on the menu, and use some ideas that I've been taking from a few trips I did to Mexico. I do arepas a lot, but I've been playing with them lately. I was just in the Yucatan Peninsula, back in Mexico, and I saw a cochinita pibil torta, and I thought that it would be perfect for an arepa-kind-of-thing. So, that's braised pork with achiote, the habanero, and the pickled red onions. Obviously the most important thing is the filling — it has to be tasty and flavorful in one bite. But with the arepa, I wanted the texture to be not too crispy, but tough enough and crisp enough on the outside. And then the pickled onions cut the richness of the pork.
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Taquitos De Hamachi:
2011_taco_drawings1.jpg"I actually did this once before with a different presentation. These are hamachi taquitos. These are al pastor, which is the Mexican style with the pineapple, onions, cilantro, and a little spice. It's supposed to look nice and beautiful, because you eat with your eyes sometimes. This is great because a lot of girls come and they don't want big food, and this is prefect — it's not too heavy, it's nice and light.
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Sopecitos De Surf and Turf:
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"This is like a bone marrow guacamole with sea urchin, tomatillo and avocado salsa, sopes, and a little extra bit of the bone marrow, too. I think this is a very fun dish. I don't know if people will like it or not, but if I saw it on the menu, I would totally order it. Sea urchin and bone marrow — I'm on it."
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· Dish Sketches: Matthew Tropeano [~ENY~]
· Dish Sketches: Gabriel Kreuther [~ENY~]
· Dish Sketches: Jesus Nunez [~ENY~]

Coppelia

207 West 14th Street, Manhattan, NY 10011 (212) 858-5001 Visit Website

Toloache

166 East 82nd Street, Manhattan, NY 10028 (212) 861-4505 Visit Website

Yerba Buena

23 Avenue A, New York, NY 10009

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