Tamales — parcels of light corn dough stuffed with meat and vegetables, wrapped and steamed inside corn husks or banana leaves — are a Mexican street food staple. They're also the main dish on the menu at The Midnight Special's latest pop-up Lulu's.
Serving up regional US and Mexican fare made with ingredients sourced from local and independent producers, Lulu's is run by chef and owner Monica Luppi. She calls her tamales 'California-style', explaining that they draw upon her childhood in San Francisco, as well as time spent road-tripping along the US West Coast. The results of those American travels feed into her culinary venture, which heads to Newtown from March 15 to April 15.
On the menu during Lulu's second stay at The Midnight Special, it also took up residence there last October, are three different tamales ($9 each) — including ones stuffed with 12-hour slow-cooked chipotle pork shoulder and the vegan version made with slow-roasted sweet potato — fried jalapeño hush puppies, mac 'n' cheese bites, chicken katsu burgers and banoffee pie for dessert.
A muffaletta, a sandwich created by Italian immigrants in Louisiana, will make an appearance on the menu, too — it's a hefty roll filled with Italian cured meats, cheeses, olives and pickles. Whether it comes close to competing with the OG at New Orleans' Central Grocery is still up for debate, but it's one of the only chances you'll have to try the famed sanga in Sydney.
Find Lulu's at The Midnight Special from 5pm, Wed–Sun, March 15 to April 15.
Image: Nash Ferguson