Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Even more traditional findings from Veracruz, Mexico.

Reminder: $11 pesos approximately equals 1 Canadian dollar.

Salsa de puerco.
This is my favourite dish. I love when my mom cooks for us or Antelma (an employee of my mom who is more like family, an aunt). My mother was very dedicated to us and always had something to feed us, healthy and delicious, great memories… Now, I am able to taste these memories again and fortunately Brian loved this dish too.
It is cooked pork with a spicy tomatoe sauce. We calculated the cost and it comes up to be $90 pesos and we were able to feed 8 people, that means: $11.25 pesos per person for a fantastic meal… And let me tell you, this meal was accompanied with rice, beans and tortillas (for that cost).

Caldo de res.
Today was beef with a lot of veggies and fruit. It is almost like a soup with corn, calabazas (zucchini), carrots, chayotes, potatoes, cabbage, onions, plantain, cilantro, mint, garlic and spices. A very spicy sauce goes with this and of course tortillas cannot be missed. For a huge pot we were able to feed 12 people, the cost = $75 pesos, $6.25 pesos per person.

Tacos al Pastor!!!
Every Thursday we cannot miss to eat tacos in Cordoba in Avenida 11; the name of the place is “PASELE JOVEN”. Some people say these tacos are made out dog meat, great use of those lonely dogs I may say. There is a promotion of $22 pesos per order of five tacos with one order for free, on Thursdays, which means that you get 10 tacos for $22 pesos, 2 X 1. Awesome!!! We cannot wait to have Tony in Cordoba to go with him to enjoy these tacos.

Eggs are fantastic here in Mexico, they taste good with anything.
Eggs with boiled beans and epazote (a herb), eggs with chorizo, eggs with gasparitos (flowers), you name it… eggs with pretty much anything are just fantastic and economical.
You can buy 30 eggs for $38 pesos, a piece of chorizo for $3 pesos, a bunch of gasparitos for $5 pesos and a kilo of tortillas for $6.5-$10 pesos.

I tried cooking this dish for Brian 8 years ago and it tasted horribly. Of course, as a polite Canadian, he ate it and did not say a word. Now that he gets the opportunity to try the real dish he confessed his feelings about my poor tezmole. Tezmole is made with chicken, a spicy sauce, dough balls with cheese and epazote inside; it can be served with beans and rice. I absolutely love it, Brian not so much!!!
The cost is about $40 for a pot to feed 6-8 people, which means about $5 pesos per person.

Hot drink traditionally made during December for Christmas season. It is a hot juice of different fruits from sugar cane to guava. It is absolutely delicious, sweet and comforting. Brian enjoyed more with the addition of rum; the best so far has been at Layfer Hotel in Cordoba. The cost of this drink is about $90 pesos for 20 litres or you can buy a litre of ponche for $20 pesos without having to go through all the trouble of getting the ingredients and making it yourself.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

More traditional findings from Veracruz, Mexico.

There will be lots of findings from the place where I was born. I will try to capture just those that are really enjoyable otherwise I can seriously write a book of a million pages, although by the time I finished it I would conclude that tacos are the best… no doubt!!!

Pan de Coscomatepec.
Coscomatepec is a beautiful-wonderful city where my mother was born. It is still a small town with great traditions; this is the exception to men hanging out in the corner just for fun rather than crime.
Bread here is the best, especially the one made in my family’s bakery. The bakery is called “La Fama” and was founded in 1924 by a family member and it is considered one of the best and most typical in the state of Veracruz, perhaps in the country. Bread is cooked in a wood fire oven and each piece has a name e.g. peine “comb”, underwear “calzones”, conejos “rabbits”, etc.
My favourite is “cubilete”, looks like a muffin filled with cheese.
Each bread goes from $0.30-$6 pesos.

This used to be my favourite dessert, a combination of Maria’s cookies and a creamy mango sauce made out mangos and two different types of milk (other fruit can be used e.g. strawberries, lemon, etc.). After the ingredients are put together the dessert is left in the fridge for couple of hours to gain the consistency needed. At the end it can be decorated with some strawberry chunks.
My brother made it to celebrate my cousin’s birthday and we really enjoyed it. He is a chef, a great one!!! I will ensure I get some tips to improve our cooking on the road…

Pan de burro.
It is not made by donkeys but it is called Bread of donkey. It is a regular type of bread, soft but with body, brown sugar is typically used to make it and a donkey figure is drawn on top of it.
Price per piece: $13 pesos, you can probably feed 20 people with this big piece, add coffee and it is a meal.

Sopa de Nopales-mom’s style.
My mom makes this great soup similar to the cactus soup we made once on the road. The main difference is that the broth is spiced with different types of peppers previously boiled and blended, with the addition of cheese and boiled eggs on top when served.

CafĂ© y galletas “Samy”.
My step brother owns a business making different products with coffee. Coffee and cookies are wonderful!!! One day you will be able to taste. You can buy the coffee to make it at home or you can enjoy a cup of coffee at his coffee shop.
Cookies vary on price from $12 pesos for a package of 10 cookies or $95 pesos for a 600 g container. You can easily eat the entire container yourself, they are that good!!!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Traditional findings from Veracruz, Mexico.

In Mexico there seems to be a diet called “Diet of T” which requires to eat tortillas, tacos, tamales, tortas, tostadas… you name it, anything that starts with “T”.

I will show you the tostadas we had in Veracruz on the side of the road. Tostada is a hard tortilla (fried or roasted) with some ingredients on top like fried beans, lettuce, tomatoe, salsa, cheese, chicken or anything you may wish… A little bit messy but enjoyable.
How much? $5 pesos each. One is enough for breakfast but if you have two you are still doing well…

We will have many more dishes to share with you from Veracruz for the next two months but could not wait to share this one to begin…