Crest Cafe

Crest Cafe joins Dining Out for Life® San Diego

Don’t miss The San Diego LGBT Community Center’s annual Dining Out for Life® San Diego! Over 100 participating restaurants, bars, coffeehouses and nightclubs in San Diego will donate a minimum of 25% of sales for The Center’s HIV/AIDS services and prevention programs. Delicious, right?

Grab your family and friends and make plans to dine out at
Crest Cafe and fight AIDS!

Interview with Cecelia Moreno of Crest Cafe

What type of cuisine do you offer? Please share some Menu Highlights.

    American comfort food. We are known for a wide variety of options from fresh burgers, pastas and omelettes to macaroni & cheese and turkey enchiladas!

Why did you choose the recipe listed below to share from among all of the others?

    It is a new very popular special. It might be the best no bean chili I have ever had!

What sets you apart from other restaurants serving the same kind of cuisine?

    Longevity, consistency and always evolving.

What is the biggest compliment you receive from your patrons?

    They compliment the service, food and notice our attention to detail.

What other charitable organizations besides The Center's Dine Out For Life do you work with?

    Hillcrest Parking Committee, Hillcrest Business Association and the Natural Resource Defense Council.


Brisket Chili

    6 large dried chiles
    6 oz bacon, diced
    1 1/4 lbs onions, chopped (about 4 cups)
    1 5-lb flat-cut (also called first-cut) beef brisket, cut into 2 1/2- to 3-inch cubes
    coarse kosher salt
    6 large garlic cloves, peeled
    2 Tbs chili powder
    2 tsp cumin seeds
    1 tsp dried oregano
    1 tsp ground coriander
    1 1/2 tsp coarse kosher salt
    1 1/2 10-oz cans fire-roasted diced tomatoes with green chiles (1 3/4 cups)
    1 12-oz bottle Mexican beer
    1 7-oz can diced roasted green chiles
    1/2 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro stems
    4 cups 1 1/2- to 2-inch chunks seeded peeled butternut squash (from 3 1/2-lb squash)
    canned chipotle in adobo sauce

    sour cream
    fresh cilantro leaves
    chopped red onion
    diced avocado
    shredded Monterey Jack cheese
    warm corn and/or flour tortillas

For chili:

    Place chiles in medium bowl. Pour enough boiling water over to cover. Soak until chiles soften, at least 30 minutes and up to 4 hours.

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Saute bacon in heavy large oven-proof pot over medium-high heat until beginning to brown. Add onions. Reduce heat to medium; cover and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle beef all over with coarse salt and pepper. Add to pot; stir to coat. Set aside.

    Drain chiles, reserving soaking liquid. Place chiles in blender. Add 1 cup soaking liquid, garlic, chili powder, cumin seeds, oregano, coriander, and 1 1/2 tsp coarse salt; blend to puree, adding more soaking liquid by 1/4 cupfuls if very thick. Pour puree over brisket in pot. Add tomatoes with juices, beer, green chilis, chipotle and cilantro stems. Stir to coat evenly.

    Bring chili to simmer. Cover and place in oven. Cook 2 hours. Uncover and cook until beef is almost tender, about 1 hour. Add squash; stir to coat. Roast uncovered until beef and squash are tender, adding more soaking liquid if needed to keep meat covered, about 45 minutes longer. Season chili to taste with sald and pepper. Tilt pot and spoon off any fat from surface of sauce.

    DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 days ahead. Cool 1 hour. Chill uncovered until cold, then cover and keep chilled. For best results, make the chili at least one day ahead so that the flavors have time to meld.

To serve:

    Set out garnishes in separate dishes. Rewarm chili over low heat. Ladle chili into bowls and serve.

Contact Crest Cafe

Crest Cafe
425 Robinson Avenue
San Diego, CA 92103
(619) 295-2510

7 AM to Midnight Daily