Pupuseria Las Delicias, better known to my husband’s pasty-white coworkers by the moniker “Meat Truck,” is a simple food station located along Route 1 near Laurel. It’s out of the way, and definitely not DC. You’ll exit 95 and think “Where am I?” Then you’ll make the turn onto Route 1 and get the sneaking suspicion that you’re about to become food for a gang of hill people. When you see a Quality Inn motel that you’re positive hasn’t washed their comforters in 20 years and you’ve lost all hope of ever seeing your family again, you’ve arrived. Park your car in the Quality Inn parking lot, glance around suspiciously to make sure that nobody recognizes you here, and climb the hill to Meat Truck.
If you need proof of Meat Truck’s authenticity, nothing speaks louder than their recent downgrade from smoke-laden outdoor grill to single-wide trailer, courtesy of the health department which, if I’m not mistaken, complained that Meat Truck was producing too much air pollution. No matter, though; you can still smell their cooking from a mile down the road, and at any given moment there are at least a dozen Salvadoran workers lined up to get a taste of that sweet sweet meat.
They’ve got pupusas, they’ve got tacos, they’ve got mango, they’ve got tamarindo. But if you really want to know what Meat Truck is all about, get the Plato Mixto and thank me later.
I was lucky enough to sample four delicious meats: the carne asada, short rib, pork rib, and chicken. The plate also includes a couple of thick Salvadoran tortillas, yellow rice, smoky pinto beans, pico de gallo, and a baggie of pickled veggies. I don’t know where else it is possible to feed two people for $13. Of the meats, the chicken is juicy and fabulous and the short rib falls off the bone and melts in your mouth like butter. Like all the others, the pork ribs had a nice crispy bark on the outside, and were juicy but slightly too gristly. The pickled vegetables are a delicious tangy accompaniment.
Word to the wise: unless you’re training for some kind of ridiculous rib-eating competition, I recommend bringing a buddy and splitting a platter. They are intense.
Price: $7 per person unless you are a fat fuck who needs to eat four meats by yourself. Then it costs $13 plus your dignity.
Bottom line: If you like well-done Central American-style meats and you don’t like spending money, look no further!