Wordless Wednesday: La Pirámide del Sol

Almost two years ago, I climbed my way to the top of the Pirámide del Sol at Teotihuacán for the very first time. I had dreamed of visiting these ancient pyramids, once the site of a powerful pre-Hispanic empire, ever since I first read about them as a child.

My suegro and my cuñada were brave enough to indulge me that summer when I came to Mexico to visit family all by myself and practically begged them to take me.

Reaching the top was a feat I thought impossible when I stood at the bottom looking up, and I had to rest at each level on the way up and assure myself I could make it up there. The steps are deceivingly steep and with little to hold on to to brace yourself, it can be sort of daunting to someone who isn’t used to climbing. But as I slowly made my way up the pyramid, there were little old ladies and women toting newborn babies in their arms passing me on their quest to reach the top. I knew I had to keep going.

And when I finally made it to the top, it took my breath away. I felt truly alive. And immensely proud that I’d managed to climb to the top – despite my shaky knees.

You can read more about my visit to Teotihuacán and how it led me to love sopa de fideo in this post from last year.

  • Have you ever climbed the pyramids at Teotihuacán?

In search of percebes in Oaxaca

When we were in Huatulco, José had his mind set on finding one kind of marine life: percebes. Known as goose or gooseneck barnacles in English, these crustaceans are filter-feeders. They’re a well-known and widely-consumed shellfish, particularly in Portugal and Spain since they’re commercially harvested off the northern coast of Spain near Galicia.

They’re also imported from Canada, and there’s actually a percebes fishery on West Vancouver Island that operates under sustainability guidelines.

If you go looking for this gourmet delight, though, it’ll cost you. I’ve seen them being sold by a few different gourmet food purveyors on the internet for about $15 USD per ounce, sold in a 5.3 ounce can that holds between 15-20 percebes each. So imagine finding these little barnacles in nature – José said it was like finding gold!

Being that I’m allergic to shellfish, I can’t eat these little guys but I sure did enjoy watching José and his dad scouring the rocks in the ocean in Huatulco looking for them. This photo was taken on the second to last day of our trip and when they spotted the percebes, they were unable to contain their excitement!

Check out this post from Eating With Jack on the proper way to eat percebes.

  • Have you ever eaten percebes?

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!

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!

Wordless Wednesday: Snorkeleando

Snorkeleando in Huatulco with my new friend, travel and food writer Cynthia Fuertes, who is a friend of my cuñada‘s. Obviously, we had plenty to talk about! (And in case you’re wondering, yes, the verb ‘to snorkel’ is ‘snorkelear’ in Spanish.) We saw an amazing variety of colorful fish and other sea life; it was so stunning! It was Cynthia’s first time snorkeleando and she loved it, and my cuñada and I had fun showing her the ropes. Stay tuned for some underwater photos and video from our excursion soon.

  • Where’s your favorite place to go snorkeling in Mexico?

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