Las Carnitas

You can join the hungry Hondurans devouring home-style cooking at Las Carnitas from early-morning breakfast to late-night snacks. Owner Tony Baday offers a huge, inexpensive menu that focuses on his native Honduras but makes stops in other Latin countries and adds a few Italian dishes to the mix.

Honduras shares El Salvador’s love of pupusas, thick, griddled corn cakes stuffed with a variety of ingredients that always include a mild cheese. They’re pretty filling so we like them with cheese alone (slightly more flavorful than mozzarella), but another popular filling is chicharrones (pork cracklings), cheese and refried red beans. (Honduras’ famed baleadas — thick tortillas with beans and cheese — are a specialty at Baday’s sister’s restaurant, La Costa Cafeteria, nearby in Davie.)

Unlike its Mexican cousin, our Honduran-style enchilada was open-face. The crisp, delicious flour tortilla was topped with well-seasoned ground beef, chopped tomatoes, shredded cabbage, sun-dried tomatoes and crumbly cheese. Liven it up with a dose of sun-dried tomato sauce with a hint of cilantro. Our order came with several containers of it, so you can pour the sauce on just about everything. It has a kick, but for real heat, garnish with jalapeños (included in our order with a side salad).  Next time we’d skip the spaghetti and meatballs. It didn’t have the traditional Italian taste we were expecting, plus you can get pasta anywhere.

Our favorite dish was the carnitas especial, a meat sampler that includes juicy churrasco, flavorful chicken fillets, a tender fried pork chop, a few perfectly cooked shrimp and three sides (we chose white rice, red beans and plantains).
Burgers, burritos, sandwiches and fajitas round out the menu — and for dessert, grab some flan or tres leches.