Another “Hidden Gem” of the Valley Revealed
By Cathryn McKee
We dropped into Sunny Boy’s Soul Food in Murrieta last week to check it out… and are we ever glad we did. This squeaky clean little eatery has a wide range of classic soul food items based on secret family recipes brought here from Southern Louisiana. The time tested, slowly cooked delicacies are guaranteed to please.
There are three chefs cooking up the delightful delicacies, all born and raised in different parts of Louisiana. There’s a little Creole, a bit of Cajun and a whole lot of soul ans southern flare going into these dishes.
“We opened in September to give the community a real sampling of good Soul food” said Chef Alton Whavers. ”Soul Food. it comes from the soul… just like my grandmother used to make. There are a lot of good restaurants in the area but there is no place to get great soul food with that authentic down home southern taste”.
The first thing that we tried was the Fried Catfish. It was crispy, tender and moist. “Good catfish is hard to come by in this area, so definitely stop on by and give us a try’ added the Chef. “We serve it grilled, baked and fried”. The dish came with three sides, we had collard greens, rice and beans…Excellent.
The Smothered Ox Tails were so tender… they almost melted in your mouth. We got the redbeans with this entrée, which were simmered forever with hamhocks and special Cajun herbs and spices (which Sunny refused to divulge)… these beans were so tender and delicious. We also tried some “killer” Mac & Cheese and Sunny’s amazing Sweet potatoes.
Having never had it, I had just to try the Chicken and Waffles. Never thought that the combination was really as good as people raved. It is here. The Chicken was cooked perfectly and I love waffles anytime.., any where.
The Smothered Pork Chops were tender, packed with flavor and you could cut them with a fork. The gravy as amazing…they make two types. We had their mashed potatoes and green beans with this dish, There were no leftovers.
The Special of the Day was Spaghetti with a Meat Sauce. Not only was it delicious, there was enough, I swear… for more than two people. All the meals come with a piece of fresh baked cornbread. I love it.
Sunny Boy’s has an amazing Chess Pie for dessert. They say that chess pie was brought to America from England in colonial times. It spread from Virginia throughout the southern states. The pie became a staple sweet treat in good Soul Food restaurants. Sunny’s is made by Chef Caroline McNeil, who uses her mother’s secret Texas recipe. The pie was delicious. Simple, understated and rich in flavor, tradition and a sense of history. You have to try a slice.
Photos by Willie Shippen