1126 Cambridge St. Cambridge; (617) 868-2309 Located just outside of Inman Square, El Rancho is one of the few places in Boston where you can get comidas tipicas of El Salvador.
This tiny storefront kitchen offers Mexican food as well, and it’s all carefully prepared and flavorful, with sizeable portions.
Among the more interesting specialties is Chicken el Sol ($6.50), in which corn tortilla chips are neatly arranged around the rim of the plate, like a Mayan painting of the sun. A generous portion of rice is laid over this, then another layer of chips, and finally a layer of diced chicken in a tangy tomato sauce. Absolutely delicious. Most interesting among the Salvadoran cuisine are pupusas, soft corn tortillas filled with vegetables and pork or cheese, all fried up brown and moist. A platter of three with beans and a spicy cole slaw goes for a mere $4.50.
With many of the meals you can add a side order of guacamole for 950. Also, there are bottles of hot sauce on the tables for those with spicier appetites. The service is friendly, if a bit slow, and the folks will be happy to explain the delicacies for you. Open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 11 A.M. to 8 P.M. Muy bueno.