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Culinary Journeys: Street Foods of Mexico City Mexico to Try
Mexico City, the vibrant capital of Mexico, is a food lover’s paradise, especially for those who enjoy exploring street food. The city is renowned for its rich and diverse culinary traditions, with street vendors offering a wide array of delicious and affordable dishes. From tacos to tamales, Mexico City’s street food scene is a must-try for any food enthusiast. In this article, we will explore ten mouthwatering street foods that you should definitely try during your culinary journey in Mexico City.
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Tacos al Pastor
- Marinated Pork: Succulent strips of pork marinated in a blend of spices, typically including achiote, pineapple, and various chili peppers.
- Popular Locations: Taquería El Huequito, Taquería El Califa, Taquería Los Parados.
Tacos al Pastor are a beloved street food staple in Mexico City. The marinated pork is traditionally cooked on a vertical spit, similar to shawarma or gyro, and thinly sliced to order. The flavorful meat is then served on a warm tortilla and topped with onions, cilantro, pineapple, and a squeeze of lime.
- Masa Dough: A mixture of corn dough, lard, and a touch of broth, filled with various ingredients such as meats, cheese, or vegetables.
- Popular Locations: Tamales Doña Emi, Tamales La Coqueta, Tamales El Dulce.
Tamales are a traditional Mexican dish made from masa dough that is wrapped in a corn husk and steamed. In Mexico City, you can find a wide variety of tamales, including those filled with chicken, pork, cheese, or even sweet tamales filled with chocolate or fruit. Tamales are often enjoyed for breakfast or as a midday snack.
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- Tortilla Chips: Fried or baked corn tortilla chips, typically topped with salsa, cheese, cream, and various garnishes.
- Popular Locations: Café El Popular, El Cardenal, La Casa de Toño.
Chilaquiles are a popular breakfast dish in Mexico City. The tortilla chips are lightly fried and then simmered in a flavorful salsa until they soften. They are often topped with cheese, cream, sliced onions, and served with refried beans and eggs. Chilaquiles can be enjoyed in red or green salsa variations, with the green version being spicier.
- Crispy Tortillas: Deep-fried or toasted corn tortillas, topped with various ingredients such as beans, meat, seafood, or vegetables.
- Popular Locations: Tostadas Coyoacán, Tostadas El Caguamo, Tostadas La Güera.
Tostadas are a delicious and satisfying street food option in Mexico City. The crispy tortillas act as a base for a variety of toppings, allowing for endless flavor combinations. Some popular toppings include shredded chicken, ceviche, shrimp, avocado, and salsa. Tostadas are typically served with lime wedges and hot sauce on the side.
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- Hominy Stew: A hearty soup made with large corn kernels, meat (usually pork), and seasoned with various spices.
- Popular Locations: La Casa de Toño, El Hidalguense, Los Tolucos.
Pozole is a traditional Mexican dish with pre-Hispanic origins. It is often enjoyed as a celebratory meal during special occasions. The stew is made with large corn kernels called hominy, which are simmered with meat and a flavorful broth. Pozole is typically garnished with shredded lettuce, radishes, onions, and served with tostadas or tortillas on the side.
- Grilled Corn: Fresh corn on the cob, typically grilled and slathered with mayonnaise, cheese, chili powder, and lime juice.
- Popular Locations: Elotes Don Toño, Elotes y Esquites de la Esquina, Elotes La Güera.
Elotes, also known as Mexican street corn, are a popular snack in Mexico City. The corn is grilled until slightly charred, giving it a smoky flavor. It is then coated with a mixture of mayonnaise, cheese, chili powder, and lime juice. Elotes are often served on a stick or in a cup, making them easy to enjoy on the go.
- Masa Cakes: Thick oval-shaped cakes made from masa dough and filled with beans, cheese, or meat.
- Popular Locations: Tlacoyos Doña Lolis, Tlacoyos Regina, Tlacoyos La Villa.
Tlacoyos are a traditional Mexican street food that originated from the indigenous cuisine. The masa cakes are shaped into ovals and then filled with ingredients such as refried beans, cheese, or meat. They are cooked on a griddle until crispy and served with various toppings, including salsa, nopales (cactus), and cheese.
- Cheese-filled Tortillas: Corn or flour tortillas filled with cheese and sometimes other ingredients like mushrooms, squash blossoms, or huitlacoche.
- Popular Locations: Quesadillas La Güera, El Califa, Quesadillas El Tizoncito.
Quesadillas are a classic Mexican dish that can be found throughout Mexico City. The tortillas are filled with cheese and then toasted on a griddle until the cheese melts and the tortilla becomes crispy. Quesadillas can be enjoyed with various fillings, including mushrooms, squash blossoms, or the unique corn fungus known as huitlacoche.
- Thick Masa Cakes: Thick round cakes made from masa dough, split open and filled with various ingredients such as meat, cheese, or beans.
- Popular Locations: Gorditas Doña Tota, Gorditas Las Quekas, Gorditas El Negrito.
Gorditas are a popular street food option in Mexico City. The thick masa cakes are split open and filled with ingredients such as shredded meat, cheese, beans, or a combination of flavors. Gorditas are often served with salsa, lettuce, and crema Mexicana, a tangy Mexican sour cream.
In Mexico City, the streets are alive with tantalizing aromas and flavors. Exploring the street food scene is an adventure that allows you to immerse yourself in the vibrant culinary traditions of the city. From tacos al pastor to gorditas, each dish offers a unique taste of Mexico’s rich gastronomic heritage. So, next time you find yourself in Mexico City, be sure to embark on a culinary journey and try these mouthwatering street foods.