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Top 10 Cheap Eats | SF Street Food Festival

With over 60 vendors covering 6 blocks of the Mission, how do you find the best cheap treats?
By - posted 8/16/2011 No Comment

With an explosion of local eateries that can be found anywhere from street corners to BART stations, mobile food stands have become so popular that La Cocina’s  2011 San Francisco Street Food Festival is coming back yet another tempting time.

Taking over 6 blocks of the Mission for a delicious day of bites both big and small, this festival is returning for its third year in a row on Saturday, August 20 to serve up tastes of everything from crepes and ceviche to handmade marshmallows and hummus.

Follow Live Tweets from 2011 SF Street Food Fest
Also be sure to check out Funcheap’s behind-the-scenes live tweets on the FuncheapSF Twitter feed on festival day to get the inside scoop on the best deals, tastiest bites and interesting tidbits at this year’s event.

So to help you figure out which of the 60+ vendors you want a taste of, here are FunCheapSF’s Top 10 Cheap Eats at the San Francisco Street Food Festival, so check out the vendor map, plan your own personal street food crawl, bring your appetite and bon appétit!

2011 San Francisco Street Food Festival
Saturday, August 20, 2011 (11a-7p)
– Folsom between 22nd and 26th, SF
– Free Admission, food for purchase
Full List of Vendors

FunCheapSF’s Top 10 Cheap Eats at La Concina’s 2011 Street Food Festival

#1: Tostaditas de Mole Verde (El Buen Comer) $8
One of our favorite dishes of the festival, this delicious green mole slathered on top of freshly-fried tortillas was full of tender shredded chicken that had a wonderful chew and a hint of heat. Don’t let that deter you from stuffing yourself with the sauce though, because this plate of “buen comer” with a kick will undoubtedly have you tempted to reach for another tostadita.

#2: Korean Taco (Namu) 1 for $3, 2 for $5
While the idea of Korean tacos may not exactly be brand new, Namu puts a tasty twist on this gourmet street food staple by wrapping it all up in a seaweed wrapper. And though it tends to disintegrate underneath the fatty short rib and creamy kimchee remoulade, it’s a lovely, Asian-inspired touch that almost makes you forget the kimchee salsa all over your shirt.

#3: Shrimp Po Boy (Zella’s Soulful Kitchen) $8
Zella’s succulent morsels of breaded shrimp were scrumptious atop a crunchy remoulade slaw and fresh French baguette, all making for a mouth-watering take on this New Orleans soul food standard, which was hearty without being too heavy.

#4: Cakepops (La Luna) $2
These moist rounds of cake, which came coated in a nice chocolate shell and dressed up with a smattering of sprinkles, had just the right amount of sweetness. Not too cloying and with a soft, fluffy texture, these cute, little cakes also come on a stick, which makes for easy snacking on the go.

#5: Lemon Cookie Ice Cream (Three Twins) Scoop $3, Pint $5
Imagine those Lemon Chalet Girl Scout cookies sprinkled atop some of the freshest scoops in San Francisco, and you got Three Twins’ Lemon Cookie Ice Cream. So forget carb control, because with just the right amount of sweet, tart and tang, you can’t go wrong with a cone (or a quart) of this delicious dessert.

#6: Mini Huaraches Alambre (El Huarache Loco) $3
With the strong taste of sweet, freshly ground corn masa and a generous helping of refried beans, one bite of this traditional, Mexico City-style taco will have you begging for more of these beef and bacon-stuffed beauties. So if you crave something with a little kick, try out these lightly fried bombs of meat, cheese and corn, because these huaraches pack some heat and will have your mouth burning long after the last bite.

#7: Scotch Eggs (Chiefo’s Kitchen) $3
With an interesting spice blend topped by a rich aioli, this Nigerian-influenced take on a British pub classic was well-seasoned with a tender, toothsome mouth feel. The deep-fried outer shell also lent a nice layer of crunch to these savory scotch eggs, which we would undoubtedly pick over pub mix and pretzels any time.

#8: Hijiki Onigilly (Onigilly) $3
Specializing in scrumptious “Samurai snacks,” this cart serving up onigiri rice balls filled with everything from garlic bacon to gyu saboro, makes a delicious vegan hijiki onigilly, which is slightly sweet and filled with salty seaweed that’s so fresh, it still somehow manages to taste like ocean.

#9: “The Yes Please” (Crème Brulee Cart) $4
Though it could have used a little more Nutella and hazelnut flavor (but then again, what doesn’t need more Nutella?), the crème brulee was still a tasty, tin-foil wrapped treat. Filled with large chunks of ripe strawberries and a well-done layer of caramel, this delectable dessert also had a nice crunchy texture to complement the fluffiness of their not-too-sweet mousse.

#10: Anything from Sabores Del Sur $3
While it’s not fancy fare, you can practically taste the soul in all of Guisell Osorio’s scrumptious South American finger food. Everything we sampled was delicious, from the piping hot and perfectly puffed empanadas to the beautiful, buttery alfajores stuffed with a delectable dulce de leche cream. So make sure to stop by Sabores Del Sur’s stall during the festival, because you can’t go wrong with anything from this absolutely lovely lady, who serves up some of the best dishes and desserts this side of the Bay.

Please be aware that exact prices and dish availability may vary on festival day, duh.

What vendors are you most looking forward to trying on festival day? Leave a comment below and let us salivate in wait!