I love Mexican food! It’s no secret I love stuffing my face, but as a human being requiring sustenance to survive (as opposed to a robot who simply requires a good set of fully charged AAs) I don’t suppose I’m alone in this pastime of filling my belly with the most delicious treats I can find. The thing is, though I have tried, I’ve never really been much of a cook.
I can whip up a tasty meal, for sure, but honestly, I’m too impatient and lazy for anything other than one-pot cooking.
Which is why Mexican cooking is perfect for me! It’s very simple: meat + sauce + tortilla + salad = deliciousness of the satisfyingly simple variety!
Okay, okay, so you’re not supposed to dedicate entire blog-posts to your bastardisation of the Mexican cuisine, but I figure that even though I use pre-packaged sauces and put avocado on everything, whether it requires it or not, I’m using local ingredients so it’s gotta count as at least 23% authentic.
And that’s good enough for me…
OUR SUPERMARKET (A.K.A ‘HALL OF AWESOMENESS’)
I love our supermarket. Firstly, it’s called, ‘MEGA’ and, as the name suggests, it’s rather large. All one’s humanly needs can be met inside the Mega (except that one, get your mind out of the gutter please!). It has a pharmacy (took me a painful ear infection to discover that one), electronics section (where you can always bet a suitably sized flat-screen TV will be attracting a large group of wide-eyed onlookers), even a stationary and books section. Though to my disappointment, my Spanish has not yet advanced to the stage of reading Mexican romance novels, so I bought a dictionary instead. I was so excited to find what I thought was an English to Spanish one and not the other way round that I actually came away with an English only one.
Yo soy estupida!
But at least I got to make another trip back to the Mega to exchange it, making limited and slightly awkward small talk with the lovely gay guy on the refund counter, whilst observing the morbidly obese (but very smiley) grocery packer return for plastic bags at least three times whilst I was there.
Why do they only give out such a tiny stack of bags at a time? I wondered, like giving yourself a really small bowl of ice-cream (or half-glass of wine) and going back ten times for more?
But I digress…
The point is, the Mega rocks. And though I generally hate food shopping, in fact loathed it at home in Perth, here I really quite enjoy it. Free samples of ham at the deli counter don’t hurt, and the unwavering patience of the gals stood behind the chilled glass all day, decked out in plastic gloves and paper masks, shaving ham for bloody gringos who have tried that expensive ham (that they never buy) three times already this month, is nothing short of impressive.
The jewel in the Mega’s great big golden crown, however, is the bakery section. As we turn our trolley’s nose away from the meat section, I start getting really excited because I know what’s next, cakes! And bread! And not just any bread, but warm, fresh rolls of the just-out-the-industrial-sized-oven variety!
Once during an exceptionally well-timed visit, I was able to literally catch fresh, white, hot rolls as they slid off the baker’s oven tray into large wooden bins housing tens of their now half-an-hour old (and in my book, stale) cousins. It was like I was on a rap (sorry, hip-hop) music video, being showered in doughy goodness as the leading bread-ho.
As the Ludacris track, ‘Girls Gone Wild’ ran through my mind, the rolls showered down, removing ‘bread purchasing’ from my list of non-erotic activities forever.
The only bad thing about the Mega is that after you’ve eaten the free ham, gotten off at the bread counter, then excused yourself to the ladies to straighten yourself up, you have to leave (preferably after paying).
BUT THEN YOU CAN EAT EVERYTHING YOU HAVE PURCHASED!
Preferably not all on the first day, though we are yet to learn this lesson. I have a relatively simple kitchen, no oven, just a hot plate and one fry-pan with which to, well, fry things, and a microwave. And though I can hear your disbelieving shrieks of “No way could she have pulled off that gourmet extravaganza without an industrial chef’s kitchen!” I am telling the truth when I say, dear naysayers, ‘Waay.’
Corn. Mexico is the home of corn, the Mayans invented it. Okay, that may not be the right word, but I’m not writing about it anyway, as I do not trust myself not to take it to a really inappropriate place.
Unleashing my skills on the neighbours…
Eating Mexican food whilst watching a doco on Mexico, how cultured…
Hard to believe hey? But thanks to a few simple ingredients, I feel like Jamie Frickin’ Olivero, minus the cool old casserole dishes that look like they’re from his Nana’s cupboard but were really purchased from an over-priced store on the King’s road.
Tyrhone’s loving life, and so am I because he thinks I’m actually making an effort, when really I’m just giving myself first-dibs on the avocados (I’ve usually eaten at least a half by the time dinner’s ready). And as long as the bread’s fresh, he no longer need worry about whether or not I’ll be in the mood.
So, Mexican cuisine is certainly agreeing with us. And don’t even get me started on the seafood ceviche I had at a local restaurant today, ’cause that’s a whole other post, with an entirely new play-list.