Tuesday, January 16, 2018
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For Homestyle Cookin’ Try Ann’s Restaurant

20171116 AnnsRestaurant FeatureImage

Rarely do I ever order chicken fried anything from anywhere. I generally am not a fan.

That being said, I've never had anything that was cooked up in Ann's Restaurant, located on Highway 83 in San Juan, that was anything less than delicious.

Those two statements were getting challenged. As my daughter Camilla and I walked into Ann's we were greeted warmly – owner Nadia Baughman and staff are terrific. We grabbed a table along the wall where a large map covered with pushpins show where people have lived and have visited – as expected, pins are dense in South Texas and the Midwest. Winter Texans love this place.

Why wouldn't they? The food is always cooked fresh and to order. You can even see owner Nadia Baughman tinkering in the kitchen, making sure everything is cooked as if she were at her own house.

You want the taste of home? It's here.

Camilla and I each ordered a breakfast taco to start. This Valley breakfast staple was probably 1.5 times the size of a normal taco with nearly twice as much filling. Both the chorizo and egg for Camilla and the ham, egg and cheese for me were fresh, cooked perfectly and the homemade tortillas were probably the best we've eaten in a long time. There's just something about home cooking.

Afterwards, I ordered the chicken fried chicken. Battered in a thin wash, the outside had a great flavor with the panko crumbs prominent. The chicken breast was thin but spread over half the plate and was cooked carefully, getting it away from the heat before any chance of drying.

Covered in white gravy with pepper, I was able to easily slice through the piece. In fact, I could use a fork. I think many places put way too much pepper on their gravy for this dish, and for the mashed potatoes. If I want more, I can put more – don't overdo it. This one was peppered just right. The mashed potatoes were creamy and with the gravy it was a perfect combination with the chicken and buttery corn and toast.

There's plenty to order at Ann's, including Mexican plates, burgers, salads.... and I’ve stayed away from chicken fried anything. I don't think I'll be a stranger to it anymore. It's terrific – and it's a lunch special on Fridays so what more could you ask.

Ann's Restaurant is located at 221 W. U.S. Highway 83 in San Juan. If you enjoy homestyle cookin’, you’ve got to try Ann’s Restaurant.

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