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More than Tequila and Tacos

Posted: 23rd June 2015 08:50

There is something magical about street food.  It is such a relaxed and casual way of eating with none of the pretence that all but the most Spartan restaurants come with, and it has a way of bringing you into the real lives of the people around you.  Whether filling up on a taco alongside truckers at a roadside stop, sitting on plastic chairs and looking out over the desert, or drinking a refreshing glass of freshly squeezed juice from a family owned juice stand in the centre of Mexico City street food has an authenticity that doesn’t need to be embellished with a sombrero hung from the wall.  Of course the main reason that street food is so popular with travellers is that you can take it with you as you explore, both saving time and bringing together the culinary and cultural tastes of the places you visit.  Tacos of course are the quintessential Mexican street food, but man cannot live on tacos alone – especially if sharing a hostel bathroom – so here are some more of our favourite street foods.

Elote

Otherwise known as corn on the cob, elote is a traditional street food found all over Mexico.  It can be found with all sorts of toppings, but some combination of mayo, cheese and chilli tends to crop up more often than anything else.  The other version of this meal is esquites (corn off the cob) which is equally delicious, much easier to eat without making a huge mess, and as a direct result not nearly as fun.

Insects

When in Rome… Eating insects is commonplace in much of the world, and even if you don’t discover your new favourite food at very least you will earn some awesome new stories.  Grasshoppers, caterpillars, or even ant eggs – take your pick and tuck in.  Cautionary Note: ‘I just ate a grasshopper’ is not actually a very effective chat up line, and check for any stray insect legs before hitting the clubs, particularly if you sport a beard.

Camotes

Camotes are the Mexican version of sweet potato and make an amazing sweet snack or desert.  Really though, our favourite thing about these meals is the camote carts themselves; pressure cookers on wheels that look like some sort of hybrid between a steam engine and a hostess trolley on steroids.  When you can’t see one you should be able to hear one not far off – the carts emit loud whistles every now and then as they let off steam.

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