Chic Frys

Bill Coyne Monday, July 18, 2022 Comments Off on Chic Frys
Chic Frys

Located in the parking lot of Fazio’s NAPA Auto Parts on North Beglis Parkway in Sulphur Iowa, La.

A few years ago, there was an abundance of road construction going on in the area. The afternoon drive home from points west through Lake Charles was time consuming and slow on a good day, and all it took was one inattentive driver to really screw it up for all of us. Fortunately, those projects have wrapped up and we’ve since forgotten those days. 

Well, maybe not. A recent experience brought a few of those commute nightmares back around for me, like a bad flashback.  

I’m always looking for new food places to try. Sometimes I’ll stumble upon them myself or find them with the help of others. I received a tip from a friend about a new food truck in Sulphur that I should probably check out. The cuisine is a fusion of Indian and South Pacific — Fijian, to be precise.  

Late one afternoon, my wife and I couldn’t decide on any dinner plans. It was hot as all get out and I decided I was going to make it simple for the both of us. I’d go across the bridge to bring home an easy meal. 

The red food truck really didn’t stand out at first, and I had to circle the block a couple of times before locating it. 

Chic Frys has a nice little setup, with a pergola providing a little shade, in a corner of the parking lot which houses Fazio’s NAPA Auto Parts on North Beglis Parkway. 

The hand-written whiteboard menu hung close to the ordering window. It wasn’t an overly complex menu, but there were still plenty of options to choose from: beef curry, chicken fried rice, steak and broccoli, or that day’s special, chicken biryani, seasoned with Indian spices and served with rice, vegetables and potatoes. I stepped to the window and was welcomed by Geeta, who co-owns the truck with her husband, Raja. 

I figured my wife would prefer the chicken stir-fry. I decided I’d go with the lamb curry, and I asked that it be made spicy. I also ordered a beef roti. 

I picked up my order, and carefully placed our dinner inside the vehicle. It was only a matter of seconds before the aroma of the spices and curry began to fill the cabin. I wondered how quickly I could make it home and whether I could make it without eating out of a Styrofoam container in my lap? Do I sample?  Do I run the risk of setting a new speed record?  

I made it home, meals intact, just as my wife arrived.  

I had ordered three things. The contents of the bag were enough to feed a family of four. Along with our meals, we got a nice bowl of lentil soup, and fresh baked warm naan.   

Opening the container of chicken stir-fry, I found a large portion of steamed rice topped with chunks of grilled chicken, bright and colorful fresh bell peppers, onion, carrots and greens. A broth full of flavorful seasonings had soaked into the rice. The lamb curry was an aromatic delight with a strong note of turmeric and coriander. 

I plated our meals along with the warm naan and sliced the beef roti, a rolled pita filled with beef, sauce and vegetables. I served it all with a bowl of Dahl (soup) and we sampled the dishes and caught each other up with our day’s events. 

The first bite of the tender lamb, drenched in savory curry, confirmed that I’d made the right choice. I did request that the heat level of spiciness be kicked up a notch, but to be honest, I’d go higher next time. A great dish will effortlessly balance heat with immense flavor, each complementing the another without drowning out or sacrificing either one, and that’s exactly what this dish is intended to be.

Over the years, there has been open public displeasure and disappointment from Sulphur residents when a new Lake Charles restaurant is announced. Granted, Sulphur is slated for a couple of fast food chains to be built in the coming year. However, people have been asking for something more. 

Take advantage of this unique cuisine, grab your favorite beverage and enjoy amazing food at home or on the go. Get out and support local.

Extra Dash

Ant Trail Ice Cream And Munchies  • 3825 Ryan St.

After nearly two years of delays and red tape, Ant Trail is giving customers the opportunity to dive into a slightly different avenue of desserts, snacks and treats.  

I first took notice of the pending business as my daughter and I were saying our goodbyes after dinner at Raja’s Curry Kitchen, located next door to Ant Trail. I peeked through the window of the new place. Intrigued, I sent a message to the business hoping for details as to what the menu would include and the timeframe for opening to the public. After waiting a year, I received a reply: “We open tomorrow.”

Ant Trail is a colorful and cute dessert shop with a long counter filled with ice cream, candies, nuts and sprinkles. A glass front cooler offers a view of hand-cut fresh fruits. The menu board offers churros, nachos, Frito chili bags, sundaes and banana splits and drinks. The twist is that Ant Hill offers desserts and snacks traditional to Mexico.  

I chose to have some eloté, or street corn: a cup filled with roasted corn in a creamy sauce with chili powder and seasoning, crumbles of cojito cheese and a wedge of lime. It’s a perfect choice to enjoy as I sat at the table contemplating the next item. 

Unfamiliar with what comprises the cucumber salad, aside from the obvious, I asked the young lady behind the counter for more info.  She informed me I had a choice of three fresh fruits in a bowl, topped with Chamoy and Tajin. 

I asked her to surprise me, and the end result was outstanding: spears of cucumber, layers of hand-cut jicama, which has a firm, apple-like texture without the sweetness, and wedges of mango. Each bite was a fiesta. The zing and zest from the Chamoy and Tajin elevated this refreshing fruit dish, a perfect choice during these hot days.

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