Open Sesame

The next big thing after the cronut

From that beloved pastry mash-up to food-truck fusion, chefs experiment with dish and ingredient combinations that cause a culinary stir. Here are a few recent discoveries.

Sushirrito is a multi-culti exploration of Japan and Mexico. The beauty of sushi and the heft of a burrito makes for a fresh, hearty, unexpected lunch favorite. Hold the salsa: Mustard seed mayo, sesame white soya, and Sriracha aïoli are the zingy condiments of choice. In other Bay Area burrito news, Curry Up Now rolls up tikka masala. The casual restaurant turns aloo paratha (potato flatbread) into a quesadilla by adding cheese.

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In the I-can’t-believe-they-made-that category comes the chicken-and-waffles pizza by Dimo’s. This Chicago establishments piles on mini waffle bites, melted butter, fried chicken, and maple syrup… all on a crème fraîche base. Vegetarians may opt for a slice of the Mac, with mac and cheese on top in place of protein.

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If you think the makings of the Chessie (crab dip, cheddar cheese, soft pretzel) are exotic, get a load of the weight: 1.5 whopping pounds. This pretzel, served in a box, enjoyed such popularity at the opening Maryland game that Byrd Stadium plans to continue to sell them. That’ll be $17.50.

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“Yes, I’ll have an Andouille-sausage-and-turkey burger, topped with a skewer of blackened shrimp, slathered in Sriracha and remoulade, on a bed of Cajun slaw, atop a toasted brioche bun. Hold the pickles.” Or, you could just say, “One Bayou Burger, please,” and Burger 21 would totally understand. The chain has a location in Scottsdale, Arizona.

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Then, there’s Ramen Burger. As in: Hold the bun and top with two homemade ramen noodle “nests” and a shoyu glaze. The burger shop expanded into Los Angeles after a successful New York run. This may only be the beginning.

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Another must-try is the new venture co-founded by the man behind Umami Burger. ChocoChicken’s star is chocolate-fried chicken, though the duck-fat fries with chocolate ketchup are a close second. ChocoChicken plans to expand to eight stores by 2016.

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