Monday, March 2, 2015

Our Spring/Summer Menu is Here!

Bang Bang Bulletin: we are super excited to announce the arrival of our brand new menu...

Don’t worry friends… our burritos are alive and well.

So what’s new? We're making it easy with grab-able stuff for lunch on the go, adding a few delicious carnivorous options (woah, brisket and homemade turkey sausage?!), and leaning into our 505 roots, because it’s the food we grew up with that inspires us the most.

Whether you need a quick snack (pre-sliced veggies!) or a proper meal in half the time (that’s wrap territory), we’re down with your efficiency. Bang Bang Café now offers turkey wraps and roast beef wraps to-go because we know that a sit down lunch is often a luxury, and sometimes ya’ll don’t have time to wait!

As they are a near perfect food*, we've added a few new burritos to the mix (AM + PM!). Our Red Chile Brisket Burrito and Green Chile Chicken Burrito (above) are great options for the meat eaters, and will only be available in the PM hours (because it takes time to make brisket THAT tender). These bad boys are smothered in our favorite chile sauces the way we like them, but never forget you can always ask for a cup of chile on the side (or do it x-mas style!). 

For those of you mourning the loss of our sausage burrito, don't worry, just add sausage to any of our burritos and a sausage burrito you will have! Plus, we're now making out turkey sausage in house, with fennel and a little heat, just the way we like it. 

Speaking of in house, Bang Bang Cafe has officially upped our game in the vegan region. Add smoked tomato field roast or house-made tofu chorizo. 

Since every day is not a burrito day, so we’ve also added this killer Southwest Salad with a chile ranch dressing that is conveniently available grab ’n go style or for a proper sit down meal. And speaking of stuff to grab, we’ve decked out our cold case with a bunch of speedy options for those “what is lunch?” kind of days (it’s the meal that lives somewhere between coffee 2 and 4, in case you forgot).

While some things may be changing, others never will. Our chile sauce is made with 100% authentic Hatch Chiles, shipped directly from New Mexico (and now our menu says so too, isn’t the chile art awesome? Thanks Christina

Additionally a big thank you to Jennifer, our new kitchen manager. If not for you, we would still be procrastinating! 

See you soon 505ers, is it chile time yet?

*If there is any part of you that questions the idea of a burrito as a near perfect food, you should very seriously consider consuming a burrito as soon as possible. Hey, are you feeling alright? Should we call Burrito M.D.? Because we will.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

New Mexico in Seattle: Chasing the Hatch Chile

“Red or Green?” A question heard so often in our home state of New Mexico they made it the official state question with an answer as personal as a coffee order to any Seattleite. Anthony Bourdain says he’s Green all the way when he visits the land of enchantment in season two of Parts Unknown.
At Bang Bang Café we offer both Red and Green Chile (or sauce, as they call it back home). If you've never been to New Mexico, chile is for eating on it's own or for smothering your favorite breakfast burrito with warm goodness. Christmas Style (or x-mas) is half red and half green, a
tradition anyone from the 505 will be familiar with but there are as many ways to go about it as there are people in New Mexico. Yuki loves red chile now, but as a child she was green all the way, which according to the Sodos sisters, is usually how it goes. Miki likes to smother her burrito in red, but dips each bite in green (or modified x-mas style).

To make proper New Mexico Style Chile you need one crucial ingredient: Hatch Chiles (that’s right, grown in Hatch, New Mexico). While our chile is vegan, chile is traditionally made with pork. When we first opened our café in 2009, we knew if chile was going to be on the menu we had to do it right. Red and green chile are both made from the same pepper (a member of the genus Capsicum) simply picked at a different time in the plant’s development. 

Interestingly enough the cultivated Hatch Chile is not a natural crop to North America, though there are native wild varieties. Legend has it that Christopher Columbus (master of discovering things that have already been discovered) encountered the chile pepper when he got lost and “found” the West Indies, aka the Caribbean. Columbus returned to Spain with the spicy foreign fruit, where the chile pepper was then cultivated by monks as a replacement for peppercorns. It was not until 1609 that the cultivated chile pepper found it’s way to New Mexico, brought by Santa Fe founder Captain General Juan de Onate.

There are many varieties of chile peppers grown in New Mexico, but the Hatch Chile is where it’s at when you're making proper sauce (red or green). Created in 1907 by Fabian Garcia, the Hatch Chile is a hybrid of Chile Negro, Chile Colorado and Chile Pasilla.  While it is possible to purchase so-called “Hatch Chiles” grown elsewhere, as true New Mexicans, we wouldn’t dream of it.

We won't reveal our source in procuring proper Hatch Chiles straight from New Mexico, but we are proud to serve the dish as it was prepared for us in our hometown. We are committed to getting our chiles from New Mexico because we love our old community just as much as the new one we've found in Seattle.

Next time you come by for a breakfast burrito really savor that chile (it's had a long journey) and see if you can taste the New Mexico difference.

International chiles may be less expensive, but when they’re from Hatch they taste like home.