Wordless Wednesday: Xochimilco

I love this photo that my dear friend, Ana Flores, took of me capturing memories of Xochimilco with my little point and shoot camera on my most recent trip to Mexico City in December 2010. I had so much fun spending the day with Ana and her family while we floated down the canals listening to live mariachi music, eating botanitas, drinking refrescos and enjoying the scenery.

I’m working on editing some video footage into a short film to share with you soon about what it’s like to visit these ancient waterways that were once very important to Mexico City’s agricultural transport system. I can’t wait to share it because it brings back such wonderful, warm memories of Mexico City for me. There’s nothing like sharing these cultural traditions with the people you love.

  • Have you been to Xochimilco or are you hoping to go someday? Tell us what you know about it, or what you’d like to know about it!

GARIBALDI

By now, you all know about my deeply rooted love for pan dulce, especially for a particular chochito-covered panque from El Globo called el garibaldi. In fact, El Globo is credited as the original maker of garibaldi, a little pound cake bathed in apricot jam and covered in white nonpareils. Many bakeries in Mexico try to emulate these little magical cakes, but nobody makes them quite like El Globo.

During our trips to Mexico City, we’ve always purchased them fresh to eat for breakfast. With a little café con leche, I can’t imagine a better way to start a day. On one occasion, we carefully wrapped a few to bring home with us to Chicago, but sadly they got slightly smashed in our carry-on luggage and from then on, we decided they didn’t travel well. And after eating garibaldi on countless visits to Mexico City, I returned from our most recent trip with a serious mission: to spend time in the test kitchen trying to recreate them so I wouldn’t have to wait until my next trip to Mexico to eat them. Looking at my calendar, five months is a long time – too long, if you ask me – to deny myself one of my favorite sweet treats…. 

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Best of The Tortilla from 2010

Today we’re headed back to Chicago and la vida diaria, but so we don’t skip a beat while traveling, we’ve prepared a few lists, based on you, the readers, and what you loved most on The Other Side of The Tortilla in 2010. Click on the photos below to visit each recipe or story.

And don’t forget, for more homemade Tortilla goodness, a glimpse at what’s cooking in the Tortilla Test Kitchen and exclusive giveaways for fans, LIKE us on Facebook!

TOP 3 BEVERAGES/BEBIDAS

TOP 3 RECIPES/RECETAS

TOP 3 TRAVEL STORIES/CUENTOS DE VIAJE

TOP 3 VIDEOS

  • We hope you’ll find something new that you may have missed or that you rediscover a recipe or story you may have already read. If your favorite post isn’t listed here, let us know in the comments what you liked best. Also, please feel free to leave a comment with what you’d like to see in 2011!

Cuando te toca el tráfico…

Mexico City is notorious for its horrible traffic, but especially so right before the holidays. This past Sunday evening, we went out to run a few errands and on the way home we hit a horrible spot of traffic because Avenida Revolución was closed for a big stretch due to a caravana de Coca-Cola, a Christmas parade sponsored by Coca-Cola. The streets were suddenly flooded with parents and children and an incredible quantity of peddlers making cotton candy right on the street. We eventually had to turn around and go miles out of the way to cross Revolución in an area where the parade wasn’t going to reach, so we spent more than an hour in traffic just trying to cross one thoroughfare.

And with the traffic here comes the constant variety of horn noises. If you think you’ve heard horn-honking in the U.S., I can assure you what you know is nothing compared to the claxons in Mexico. In fact, there’s even an iPhone app called Claxons Mexico that has 12 different sounds with horn noises very common to Mexico City. To be honest, José and I have only ever heard about half of them, but they’re all pretty funny. When I showed the app to my suegro he was definitely amused with it!

Anyhow, while stuck in traffic last week, I found myself next to a delivery truck full of Boing in glass bottles. It took everything in me to not get out of the car and grab one! You can sort of see at the bottom of the picture that on the lower shelves of the truck were empties with popotes (straws) still in them. This is one of those photos that I tuck away in my mind as a recuerdito of my times in Mexico.

  • Have you experienced Mexico City traffic? What do you do when stuck in traffic?

Las Posadas Navideñas

Las posadas navideñas are the nine days of annual Christmas celebrations that culminate with a big celebration on Nochebuena, or Christmas Eve, in Mexico. The nine days symbolize each of the months that Mary was pregnant, and that’s also why Christmas Eve is more celebrated in Mexico than Christmas Day like in many other countries.

The posadas often include traditional foods and drinks, especially things like tamales and ponche navideño. There are many different ways to make ponche, and each family does something different. Another holiday favorite of mine is rompope, an eggnog-like drink that comes from the famous nuns of Puebla,  located about two hours outside of Mexico City.

RELATED RECIPE: How to make ponche navideño

Watch this video to learn more about las posadas and how our family celebrates.

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