After buying ingredients for my potato chip chocolate chip cookies (see previous post), I decided on an early dinner and headed toward Exit 2 to discover what deliciousness lie ahead.
Never really having taken Exit 2 before, I soon found that it led to MD-710, Ordnance Road and Glen Burnie. I took the Glen Burnie exit and found myself in easy walking distance of Exit 3 off the beltway. Wanting to save that for a future post, I did a U-ey (pronounced "you-ee") and got back onto the freeway. I continued south on MD-10 and got off the next exit, leading to Furnace Branch Rd. (MD-270). With two ways to go, I turned left at the light and sought food.
Boy did I find food.
Best Seafood (map) caught my eye because it was pretty close to the on-ramp, and because it was next to a BBQ joint (more on that in a paragraph or two). Hemming and hawing a little bit, I chose the seafood place. This turned out to be a very small take-out place, no seating at all. Sandwiched in between fake crabs and a calendar with a very large picture of Jesus and some kids on it was a menu. The adjacent wall had more, impromptu printed-out specials. I told the cheerful middle-aged Korean woman behind the counter that I needed a minute, then quickly changed my mind when my attentions were diverted to the fried fish. Lots of it - catfish, whiting, flounder. All they had today were those three things. I went with the fried catfish for $7.75, choosing fries over cole slaw (my mistake, actually), half-expecting some warm-over ick of an excuse for fish.
Since it would not be ready for another 10 minutes, I meandered outside and looked in the window for Dotson's Barbeque (map, though why bother because it's the same one as for Best Seafood). This is the next-door BBQ/soul food take-out. This place even got written up in Baltimore Magazine oh, seven years ago. I asked the elderly African American gentleman about the corn muffins advertised on the menu, even older and crustier than the one next door, for only 50 cents! I ordered four, and he heated them up for me. Dotson's, which also has a larger building across the street, has various tasty items in addition to their ribs: mince chicken, greens (I bought a small bowl for $1.75), pig's feet, potato salad, macaroni and cheese, all homemade.
I'd have to come back to try the ribs, though, because my fish was waiting next door. I put my greens and corn muffins in my car and went in for my fish. I forked over my card for the fish, and also ordered some hush puppies (mmmm) which I paid for with cash (only $1.25, so I did have it to spare). I got all this wonderful, cheap food home, photographed the hell out of it (for your viewing pleasure) and sat down to eat.
What I was most impressed with was the catfish. The coating was crispy and crunchy and - here's the best part, in my opinion - the fish tasted like fish! You may be thinking "Um, duh, what else does it taste like?" But so many fish fillets I have ordered, takeout or sit-down, have been flavorless. All the fish flavor just leached right out of 'em. This, on the other hand, tasted like fish. How novel! And I had two large fillets, one of which is sitting in the fridge as I write this. So I have more. Now please don't stop to remind me: I am sure there are better fish out there than Best Seafood's. But this hole-in-the-wall offered up surprisingly good product, so I am glowing about it.
The other parts were less memorable, but mostly good. The hush puppies were in some strange potato wedge shape - I couldn't visually distinguish them from the little, forgettable potato wedges that came with the fish. But the hush puppies were good. Same with the greens, a little bitter and a little salty, but tasty. The corn muffin never really got touched, on account of the hush puppies. But I've bagged the rest for further consumption.
Places I visited:
Best Seafood (seafood) – 7319 E Furnace Branch Rd, Glen Burnie, MD, Phone: (410) 761-4666
- Would I eat there again? Sure
- Would I go out of my way to eat there again? Sure, but only for the fish
- Would I eat there again? Sure
- Would I go out of my way to eat there again? Sure, mostly to try what I haven't yet