“Now ya’ll muthaf@#$as need to quit that f@#$in’ cussin’ or take it outside ‘cause I’m the only muthaf@#$a allowed to cuss in here…” the older man behind the counter warned a couple of kids standing in line who were, ably enough, cussing.
And with that, welcome to Han-D-Sak, 2700 N. Kelley Ave. Ostensibly a convenience store, come the lunch hour, this small-time corner shop becomes one of the notoriously busiest fast-food joints in town, with everyone from neighborhood locals to government suit and ties trying to get in a quick order of the Sak’s popular deep-fried meat-stuffs before they run out.
Last week, however, Han-D-Sak gained a little bit of extra notoriety when an angry customer, apparently not at all satisfied with his purchase, took an axe handle and threatened to bludgeon the cook with it. We’ve all felt like that a time or two when dining out I’m sure, but let’s be honest here: it’s hard to criticize and critique a deep-fried pork-chop bought from a grease-stained glass-case and kept warm under a heat-lamp.
You get what you pay for, Little Lord Fauntleroy.
And boy howdy, people do love to pay for it. The queue of customers stretched around the store and practically out the door, the smell of hot oils and fried flesh just permeating the thick atmosphere; when it comes your time to order, you better know what you want and you better be ready to go because at Han-D-Sak, they suffer no fools and will easily move on to the next person, without a pork-chop or remorse.
I was lucky enough to score not only the last of their aforementioned deep-fried regular-size pork-chops ($1.99 each), but a few small chicken wings (3 for $2.99) and a spicy hot link ($1.49) too, all thrown into a paper sack with a few slices of white bread and some packets of hot sauce. As I handed the cashier my cash, I noticed the sack had already become transparent from the unholy amounts of oil dripping of my meats.
That’s always a sign of good eating and even better dying.
Sitting on the pavement outside the Han-D-Sak, digging into them chops, my fingertips burned from the still hot grease as I bit into a beautifully chunky cut of cheap pork, oil spurting erotically in every direction, dribbling into my exposed chesthair. But I didn’t care…I found a special kind of bliss with this chop; hand-battered and heavily-coated in a heavy mix of herbs and spices—a family recipe, I’m told—delivering an exquisitely crispy outside that is a sodium-rich delight, one that compliments the absolutely juicy, tender other white meat to a purely sinful degree.
Willing to push the heart-straining envelop even farther, the chicken wings were also quite the fanciful take on an old favorite, with that hand-coating of flour and spices making all the difference. Every muscle and every sinew, every joint and every bone was made clean and white, picking what I could off the bone in-between bites of the superior hot link sausage; each nibble of that defiantly spicy wiener burned my tongue with a specialized heat that could only be quenched by a Sunkist Cherry Limeade or two. Or three.
As I’ve been steadily learning over the past few years, in Oklahoma City, the deep-fried gas-station pork-chop has truly become a local culinary tradition unto itself, an individualized specialty that sure does beat the same old fried burritos and chicken tenders that so many heat-lamp delis across the Metro offer. Han-D-Sak is definitely one of the better stop and go snack shacks I’ve come across recently, one that is more than worth the five-dollar grease-stains on your shirt as well as your soul any time of day.
Just keep the f@#$ing cussin' to a minimum, ya hear? Cómpralo ya!
I totally forgot to order the peach cobbler. Follow Louis on Twitter at @LouisFowler.