As my tan (or lack thereof) slowly begins to fade, and those sunny days on the beach grow farther away, I’ve found myself scrolling through photos of the food that I ate over spring break. Instead of getting hungry all alone, I wanted to share some of my favorite South Florida eats with you.
First up, El Tropico, a Cuban restaurant in Miami– no website, just a Google Maps link, which is oftentimes a good thing when you’re looking for very authentic food. My friends and I ordered a range of appetizers including sweet plantains, black beans and rice, ham croquettes, and these empanadas stuffed with melt-in-your mouth chicken:
We also ordered fried plantain cups filled with intensely flavorful shrimp and crushed tomato:
These little cups would make for a great pass-around appetizer; I think I might try to re-create them! Eating at El Tropico on a Friday night feels like you’re at a family celebration. Everyone is dancing along to the energetic Cuban band that plays in the corner, drinking mojitos all the while. I even got up to dance with the manager; thank goodness for my Zumba skills.
The butternut filling was incredible and I slopped up the sauce with a slice or two of the restaurant’s crusty, cheese-topped bread. The spot is located in the fun downtown area of Delray, and its interior matched the vibe with low lighting, brick walls and black-and-white movies playing on picture frame-enclosed flat screen TVs.
I spied the table next to us sharing what seemed to be a fantastic, rustic pizza, making Vic & Angelos a great place for friends to dine before a night out!
Kilwin’s has always been a favorite of mine for fun ice cream flavors and treats. Walking into a Kilwin’s store is like walking into waffle cone heaven. The entire place smells of them and you cannot leave without trying one.
I had my waffle cone last week inside of their Blueberry Waffle Cone ice cream, which I could have easily eaten a vat of. I also tried Kilwin’s Tracks, or vanilla ice cream with fudge and peanut butter cups. The combination sounds strange but how can you go wrong with blueberries and chocolate?
Finally, Rebs and I went with my grandparents to Mississippi Sweets for “The Best BBQ in Boca,” which probably isn’t saying much because it’s Boca and not Houston but trust me, it’s delicious. I ordered BBQ ribs and chicken with a side of applesauce and coleslaw:
They use this applesauce in their cornbread in place of butter, leaving little pieces of apple in each thick slice. The service is always a bit off, but just ignore the lack of smiles and “how are you’s” by ordering a slice of house-made key lime pie and you’ll be a happy camper (if you’re not into key lime pie, they also have pecan pie and peanut butter cup pie. I know). Key lime pie just so happens to be my favorite dessert in the world, so having it in Florida was a special treat:
Fun fact: I usually have key lime pie twice a year; once when I’m in Florida and once as my birthday cake!
I wish I could be back on the beach thinking about that delicious graham cracker crust and smooth, tangy filling but I’m in D.C. Still eating, still happy, just less sun. Where are your favorite places to eat in South Florida?