When the railroad reached Bakersfield in 1878 the city fathers would not cowtow to the prowerful railroad magnates, and refused to give them tribute for placing the railroad station in town, so they bypassed it and built the station a couple of miles away and called the stop Kern. So the city fathers built a trolley to the station. Kern became known as an international village, and Basque, Mexican, Italian, and Chinese establishments arose. One of the restaurants I like has been there many years, the Arizona Cafe, with authentic Mexican dishes and great menudo on Sunday morning if you need to burn off a hangover. This is one of my favorite dishes from there:

1 Chicken fryer, cut into pieces (half the breasts, discard neck and back)

4 Small potatoes (2 1/2 inches long)

1 16 oz can of hominy

1 Tsp ground cumin

4 Small whole jalapino peppers seeded and stemmed

1 Cup escarole or spinach

1/2 Cup diced white onions

4 Green onions, trim the beards and tops (chop and retain tops)

8 Chicken bullion cubes

1 Red bell pepper seeded and quarteed

1 Yellow bell pepper seeded and quarted

1 (or more if you like it hot) Tsp good hot sauce (Tabasco or ??)

1/3 Cup olive oil

8 Cups water

Salt and ground pepper

Brown the chicken in a hot skillet in the olive oil for just a few minutes and remove to drain. Bring the water to a boil in a large soup kettle and add all the other ingredients…whole chicken pieces, whole potatoes, hominy, green onions, bell peppers, and jalopinos. Retain the chopped onion for a garnish. Reduce to a slow boil, cover, and cook for 40 minutes. Remove and serve each guest, in a shallow bowl, the piece or two or more of each guests preferred chicken, a whole potato, a green onion, some hominy, a jalipino, and broth to cover. Offer the chopped onion and chopped green onion tops as a garnish. Serve with flour tortillas, lots of butter, and good cold beer. Enjoy.