Farmer Jeff and I have gone to our respective childhood homes for the holidays and have found ourselves smack dab in the middle of wonderful, rich traditions...of Mexico.
While visiting Jeff's family in the Central Valley of California, we were treated to a great performance by Ballet Folklorico Mexicano de Carlos Moreno with Mariachi Colima. It was so much fun! They did the dance from Veracruz in which the couple ties a big bow from the man's red sash, lots of stomping, hooting and hollering in a Norteno style of cowboy music and then some wonderful Indian dances. The mariachi group was fun with its blaring trumpets and the deep throated guitarron. We just don't get to hear live mariachi bands. We can, however, hear them at our favorite taqueria on the jukebox!
After an all to brief time in "the Valley", we flew down to San Diego and drove directly to Point Loma Seafood for lunch. A big lunch! I had an oyster Po'boy and red clam chowder while Farmer Jeff had white clam chowder and a fried squid sandwich. We waited long enough to be hungry again for dinner...thankfully. We had a very good reason to pray for hunger. HOMEMADE TAMALES!!!
For those of you unfamiliar with Mexican Christmas traditions, it is customary to make tamales at Christmas. Not just pork, chicken or beef tamales, but this is when you see the sweet tamales with raisins, pineapple, prunes, or apples. The sweet ones are an acquired taste. Last night's tamales were "red sauce" chicken. The masa was PERFECT!!! So soft, but not too soft and had the flavor of both chicken AND the rich red chile sauce. They were big, so I could only comfortably eat one...but Farmer Jeff and the other men in the house managed two apiece.
We took a drive to the beach community of Ocean Beach. There we had Poma "torpedo" sandwiches with salami, mortadella, provolone and then lettuce, tomato, peperoncini and dressing of olive oil and red vinegar. YUM!!!
After eating that we walked up and down Newport Avenue, poking our heads into the antique stores. While walking we couldn't help but notice the unmistakable smell of corn tortillas cooking. Maybe not specifically tortillas, but certainly warm, Mexican corn-based foods. I am not exaggerating when I say that we walked 8 blocks and this smell was present everywhere we walked!
And now? We are getting ready to go and have dinner at our FAVORITE Mexican Seafood restaurant, Mariscos Mazatlan
. It is worth the drive to Chula Vista! Farmer Jeff is reading the menu to me...Shrimp with garlic, Shrimp wrapped in bacon and grilled, Shrimp cooked in a Molcajete served with cactus....Thanks to brother Chris who turned us on to it!!!
Tomorrow we will visit our other favorite Mexican place, El Indio
. I know that I will order 2 taquitos with guacamole and cheese, along with a small all shredded meat burrito! YEE HAW!!! Muchisimas Gracias, Mexico!!!
Labels: Ballet Folklorico, El Indio, Mariscos Mazatlan, Mexican Food, San Diego