BEST EATS: A BBQ tour, plus staff-prepared lemon pepper chicken and ahi tuna — plus a new contributor

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BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — This week we received multiple staffer submissions of home-cooked meals, and reporter Nicole Gitzke went on the BBQ Tour of Kern County, where she indulged in several overstuffed sandwiches.

The barbecue is great, but as an added incentive you get a free T-shirt if you visit nine restaurants on the list.

PorkChop & Bubba’s BBQ, 1230 H St., Bakersfield, Champs BBQ, 35315 Merle Haggard Drive, Bakersfield, Willow Ranch Restaurant, 27770 Lagoon Drive, Buttonwillow

“This first beauty (pictured in the featured image) is a special item at Porkchop & Bubba’s,” Gitzke wrote. “It is The Dead Pig Walking. It has a bacon jalapeño jelly with cream cheese, pulled pork, rib tip schnitzel and candied bacon, all topped with more cream cheese!”

Chicken cheesesteak sandwich from Champs BBQ

“Next, we stopped at Champs BBQ,” Gitzke said. “This is similar to a Philly cheesesteak but made with chicken. It’s topped with lots of cheese grilled onions and peppers, and served with fries. So tasty!”

“Plow Boy” at Willow Ranch Restaurant

“Last but not least we made a stop at Willow Ranch in Buttonwillow,” she said. “This is called the ‘Plow Boy.’ It has pastrami, brisket, cheese, served with a side of onion rings.”

Brown stew chicken, Barrington’s Jamaican Kitchen, 4120 Ming Ave., Bakersfield

We have a new contributor to Best Eats, reporter Sierra Murdock, who provided us with not one, not two, but three submissions. Glad to have you, Murdock!

Her first submission was the brown stew chicken at Barrington’s, one of her favorite local meals.

Buttermilk pancakes, Rockwood Grill, 74855 Country Club Drive, Palm Desert

Next Murdock submitted a photo of a lovely breakfast of buttermilk pancakes from Rockwood Grill in Palm Desert. You can’t go wrong with buttermilk pancakes with powdered sugar atop.

Katsu Chicken Peanut SaladJOEY DTLA, 700 W 7th St., Los Angeles

Finally, is a photo of the Chicken Katsu salad from JOEY DTLA. Murdock says if she closes her eyes long enough she can still taste the peanut dressing. One word to describe it…heavenly. Says she’d go on record ranking it as one of the best salads in the Los Angeles area.

Lemon pepper chicken, Mason Rockfellow

Assignment Editor Mason Rockfellow put his air fryer to good use by filling it with chicken legs covered in lemon pepper seasoning.

“Easiest fried chicken I ever made, with one of the best outcomes,” Rockfellow said.

Grilled ahi tuna, Raphael Stroud

Reporter Raphael Stroud enjoys eating out, but he’s more than capable of putting his own meals together, too. This week he grilled ahi tuna steaks with chili sesame oil. Check out those beautiful grill marks!

Sashimi plate and Nicky’s Special Roll, Kasagiri Restaurant

Sushi tacos, sashimi plate and Nicky’s special roll, Kasagiri Restaurant, 128 East F St, Tehachapi

Anchor Maddie Janssen is a regular contributor to Best Eats, and this week she shared photos of a stunningly beautiful sashimi plate from Kasagiri Restaurant in Tehachapi, along with a roll and “sushi tacos.”

Sushi tacos, Kasagiri Restaurant

The roll had shrimp tempura, avocado, crab mix and scallions, and was topped with seared ahi tuna.

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