Mandos writes:

Behold! The crab and asparagus omelet from a pancake house somewhere in the vicinity of Dez Plainez, Illinois. I ate it a few weeks ago in the company of Jennifer and EL.

…but wait! That doesn’t look like an omelet! That’s because it is, as the menu said, “totally encased in sauteed hash browns.” In fact, this restaurant had an entire menu section with 20 or so items for “totally encased” foods. As soon as we saw this, we decided that I absolutely had to order it.

This is what it looks like on the inside:

So, this is the kind of awesome and creative thinking of which the world needs more—in the same manner that the world needs more creative financial instruments. Because, like CDOs, you would think that a food like this would be something like an omelet wrapped in latkes/potato galettes and would have a high probability of being absolutely amazing, even as it is totally preposterous.

Sadly, as our friends at “Sadly, no!” say, no.

In fact, it is just like a CDO in that its awesomeness depends on a faulty independence assumption: that wrapping an omelet in hash browns would still have independently awesome omeletty goodness and crispy/flaky hash browns. But, alas, inside the crispy, browned “senior tranche” on the outside, there was an interior “junior tranche” consisting of soggy, lukewarm potato mash and an uninspired interior
“omelet” with limp fake crab and flavourless asparagus (disparagus?).

Consequently: disgusting.


  • Hey, boss! Des Plaines! Des Plaines!

    Also: Mandos is the Anthony Bourdain of DorD. Discuss.

  • I blame the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977 and Jimmy Carter, Mandos.

  • He will be when he eats that bug.

  • I am guessing Mandos’s omelet was still better than the nasty non-encased one I had…

    I had not been to this pancake house since it was in our burb and moved to the “lovely” Des Plaines. The previous locale offered up very good items… so good that the wait to get in was usually too long and people would walk away, hence the move to a bigger locale. Apparently the cooks didn’t move with them.

    Still, it was awesome sitting across from Mandos as he offered himself up for DorD experimentation.

    I wonder if that dish would work better if you could somehow deep fry the entire thing… thus ensuring crispiness. Of course, I’m guessing better ingredients would be good, and you probably won’t find those at a pancake house. When Mandos said it came with crab, all I could think of was that he would no doubt be hugging the porcelain bowl later that evening.

  • Oh, it was, as I guessed, imitation crab, which is basically potato starch and Alaskan pollock and random additional artificial flavoring and texturing ingredients, usually, plus preservatives—completely digestible extruded food product.

    It also turns totally soggy when cooked and if not careful, it acquires the consistency of snot. As it did in this case.

  • Artificial crab, evil or really evil? Thanks for taking one for the team Mandos.

  • Oh, it was, as I guessed, imitation crab

    Of course it was… but that can still make you hug the bowl.

    My corned beef hash was really Ol Roy… and I don’t even want to know what the “sauce” was.

  • I used to do crab imitations in my stand-up act. Sank like a fucking stone. Philistinians

  • This may be the best thing on the internets, ever.

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