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Restaurants & Bars

Chorizo Crawl – The other La Raza Market – carne seca (house-made beef jerky)

rworange | Aug 31, 200602:54 AM    

Continuing my crawl checking out the small Mexican Markets from Richmond to Pinole ...

There are two La Raza markets within a few blocks of each other. This is on the corner of 22nd & MacDonald.

Only dried chorizo is sold, but it looks like a thick fresh chorizo and it is hung from the wall and not refrigerated.

Dry chorizo: - Uncooked the meat was the color of orange-red winter squash. It was a medium grind and a little chewy, but in a good way.

The casing was a little thicker than most. It had a mild taste with notes of cinnamon, chili and vinegar. It was not overly fatty and there was just enough oil to fry some potatoes.

I was reading an article about preserving meat and it seems that vinegar is a high-acid preservative which might explain why so many of the dry chorizos taste of vinegar.

The surprise here was a plastic case filled with thin large slices of carne seca.

It had a deep roast beef flavor and tasted of the lime marinade. I ate it with an additional squeeze of fresh lime, as suggested by the butcher.

This is the first time I’ve tried carne seca, so there is nothing to compare it to except beef jerky. It was a lot tastier than most beef jerky I have had, but I’m not an expert in jerky either. Here’s more on the General board about carne seca:

http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

The meat counter at the back of the market is large with limited fish and a small cheese selection. The meat here is the focus.

They had some nice-looking smoked pork and the most real-looking leg of lamb I’ve ever seen ... it actuall looked like a leg. They have a big plastic case with chicharron and a few other fried things. The salsa is not house-made. The fish selection was tilapia, whole and fillet, and some shrimp.

The market is a little larger than most, carrying an average-looking produce section, the usual pan dulce and some bags of fresh masa near the register. The dried pepper selection ($3.99 lb) looked larger than most area markets, but it turns out there are two bins of each pepper variety. It has one of the larger packaged spice and packaged dried pepper selections.

The market and meat counter are separate. Pay the butcher for the meat. There is usually someone who speaks English. On my second visit they recognized me and were very helpful.

Often there is a lady selling very good hand-shaved raspados outside the market.

http://www.chowhound.com/news/show/10116

La Raza
Corner of MacDonald & 22nd Street
Richmond , CA

Rankings:

1. Valley Produce (Pinole)
2. Tie - La Guarecita (San Pablo)
2. Tie - Mi Tierra Supermercado (Richmond)
3. Super Mercado La Raza (Richmond)
4. La Raza (Richmond) but VERY close to Super Mercado La Raza
5. El Porvenir (San Pablo)
6. El Mercadito San Juan (Richmond)

Previous post (with links to other posts)

Chorizo Crawl – Super Mercado La Raza (Richmond)
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

Chorizo Crawl Recap – What’s your favorite chorizo?
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

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