A Food Tour in Mexico’s Yucatan Region

March 2014

Food Tour in Yucatan Mexico

A duo holiday in Cancun and Merida is an ideal holiday combo, you get the gorgeous beach holiday you’ve been dreaming of, plus a vast array of cultural experiences, all within one region of Mexico. One of my best experiences in Mexico was a tour of a private cenote and a sumptuous lunch organized by Catherwood Travels. Their specialty is organizing bespoke, sustainable travel experiences in the Yucatan region of Mexico for travelers who want to learn more about the authentic Mexico.

A Foodie Tour in Mexico

I’m salivating. Mexico has done it to me again, taunting, teasing and tantalizing me with new, and delicious food experiences. I’ve recently returned from a trip to the Yucatan region of Mexico and my thoughts are focused in only one direction. How do I get my hands on a scrumptious Mexican spice dip I tasted during a visit to a beautiful, private little hacienda in Yucatan?

Let me give you a little back-story to this dilemma. Recently, I was fortunate enough to go on a four-day trip to Mexico, where I explored the Mayan ruins of the Yucatan with two Maya archeologists from Catherwood Travels. The Catherwood Group also owns Rancho Xocempich, a hacienda with its very own cenote near Chichen Itza, a welcome rest stop after a hot sunny day exploring the history and sites of ancient Maya.

The rough entrance to the property hid the delights awaiting us. A narrow winding road led to an old hacienda restored to glowing cream-colored perfection.

Food Tour in Mexico

Lunch was served within minutes of our arrival, starting with vegetables and the spice dip. I loved it. Maybe it made a big impression on me because I was starving after a long morning at Chichen Itza, maybe it was because I love spice, the hotter the better, or perhaps just because it was a wonderfully delicious complement to sliced papaya, carrots, peppers, and oranges.

During the next few days in Merida I searched in markets and small stores to see if I could buy some of this spice to bring home. I couldn’t find it anywhere, but I have to admit I was too busy touring, exploring and having fun to look very hard. But now I’m home and OMG, I want this spice dip.

Thank goodness for Google, the source of all answers to questions. On the first page of my internet search for chili, lime, sugar, salt, I found the recipe for this magically delicious spice on the Spicy Perspective website but with no name attached to the spice mix. Does anyone know what the heck this concoction is called? If you do, be sure to fill us in via the comment section below.

I’ve adjusted the recipe a little bit, adding more chili powder cause I like it hot, also I remember someone in Mexico mentioned the mixture had sea salt. And here it is, so simple and yet so good:

Food Tour in Mexico1 tablespoon of sugar

¼ teaspoon of sea salt

1 teaspoon of chili powder (preferably ancho)

1 pinch of cayenne

Zest of 1 lime

Mix the above ingredients with a mortar and pestle or in a small food processor.

Serve with fresh fruit and vegetables (papaya, mango, oranges, carrots) as well as fresh lime wedges to squeeze over fruits, and vegetable. Dip fruit, vegetable slices in the Mexican spice mix, and enjoy!

Disclosure: As part of a sponsorship agreement with Transat Holidays, the airline asked me to talk about my favorite activities in Mexico and to explore the many benefits of a dual vacation experience in Cancun and Merida.

The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Transat Holidays.

Find out more on Transat Holidays.

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