Friday, April 10, 2009

More Mexico

Las Casas. The street in Oaxaca for good late night eats. These tacos were made from pig heads that were steamed and then chopped with the meat and fat separated and placed on a griddle in two piles. Order a taco and get a perfect mix from each pile on a corn tortilla with some thin guacamole, salsa, onion, and cilantro. Limes and chili salt were on the counter. Around 70 cents each, these were by far the best tacos I've ever had when sampled when the stand was busy. When we went back on a slow night, not so good. But the pozole--transcendent. That's their other stand in the background, and behind the picture taker (me) is the competition that sells slightly inferior tacos with slightly superior salsa. Wish they'd collaborate.

Yellow chickens. Why? I don't know. Maybe the corn, maybe marigolds? Still, they looked tasty in their freakish yellowness.

Dried shrimp. It's not just for Asia.


Let's see the USDA approve that.

Tripe and liver. Menudo anyone?

Raspado. Fresh scraped ice, strawberries in syrup, and just a bit of sweetened condensed milk. Available in all sorts of flavors. If there's a more refreshing beverage type thing I've never had it. Also about 70 cents a cup. Possibly gringo price.

Refrigeration? Overrated.

Two key internet resources for getting by:
This one from Chowhound on street food. And this one, particularly regarding the quirks in Oaxacan Spanish.

We also enjoyed elote, tlayudas (pronounced clayuda), grilled meat at the market, mole negro, tejate, tamales, rellenos, ceviches, chocolate in milk, fruits, juices . . . . We ate a lot. It was good.

And here's a video that shows how to make one or two portions of pork--cecina--feed thousands.
I'll probabaly add here or do one more post on Oaxaca. Then it will be time to let it go. If I want pig head tacos I'll just have to make them myself.


laughing kneecap said...

don't you mean chocolate in water

The CFT said...

you might be right. either way, it was intense.

and pick one identity and stick with it, marshmallow woman.

Anonymous said...

your local fishmonger thinks there should be some ice on those fish, but what does he know

DianeS said...

Steve has always said that the best chicken he's ever had is chicken in Mexico. He worked in Mexico City for a while and fell in love with the roasted chicken there. He thinks the color of the skin has to do with corn and sunflower feed but he's not positive.

We stopped in Bourg en Bresse last night to try the famous bresse chicken. Neither of us was impressed with the flavor or texture. I have had richer flavored chicken from Plum Creek and also the folks I used to buy from in Michigan.

There is a butcher on Rue di Rivoli, not far from where we stay in Paris in The Marias, who roasts chickens and always has a few bresse birds on his roaster. Next time we have a chance I will try a roasted bresse bird from him.