365 Project: Day 60

at Super Mercado El Borrego

at Super Mercado El Borrego

Viv and I went to my old neighborhood to get some great carnitas. My Mexican friend Maria introduced me to that place. A tiny hole in the wall where everything is cooked onsite. It is actually a grocery store but they also have a tiny fish and meat section.

There is a nearby big Mexican produce store that sells carnitas also but Maria said I should buy it at the Super Mercado because that is where they went all the time.

We must look like Latinas because they were speaking to us in Spanish but we told them in Spanish that we speak English only. How’s that? It means we speak only a little of Spanish although the language taught back home is the Castilian version.

We were surprised when one of the owners offered to let us try their dishes there. We tried their chicharones (deep fried pork skins), tamales, taquitos, barbacoa and menudo. It sounds like we almost had lunch there. No kidding! In the end we also tried their candied fruits. I loved the sweet potato because it reminds me of the one back home.

Boy, did they offer us a lot to try and they were very generous. A sampling of a tamales meant a piece for each of us. Viv and I had been looking for the tamales we bought last summer at a nearby church and this one was just as good. But next time, we’ll buy some taquitos and their roasted chicken which included some roasted jalapenos and cebollitos (spring onions). They were insistent that I try the champorrado, even just a small amount they said, which looked very much like our favorite breakfast food in the Philippines but I was too full already. They were very friendly and very sincere in their hospitality.

In the end not only did we get carnitas, we also brought home some menudo (it is different from the Filipino menudo though), chicharones and tamales and candied fruits (excellent!). Their personal approach and congeniality won us over, we would be back.

On the way home, we picked up some Mexican pastries from La Central Bakery.

Chicago is home to many people of different nationalities from all over the world. I believe in embracing and celebrating our differences otherwise this world would be so boring if there is no diversity. Let us all be open-minded, understanding and respectful of other people’s culture, you might be surprised what they have to offer you.

This entry was posted in Battling the bulge, Food and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to 365 Project: Day 60

  1. Amy says:

    Wonderful post! I agree… and I did a post “the Epitome Of Sophistication” http://wp.me/pSlDL-6pJ
    you might like it 🙂 Happy Sunday!


  2. bebs1 says:

    I love your “Epitome of Sophistication”. We all can learn from that, that what we know is not always the right way. Thank you Amy!


  3. This post made me hungry again even after a heft lunch of a chicken fajita.. blame it on the good writing! LOL


  4. bebs1 says:

    I am so humbled coming from you Dinah. Anyway, I was afraid I was going to have a heart attack after I had the Mexican menudo. It was a cross between callos and the Ilocano pinapaitan maybe because of the use of tripe and callos because of the color. The Mexican version is red from the ground peppers not from saffron though and it was also mixed with beef and pork hocks. And I so wanted to make some callos – now I am realizing I could only take in so much offal. Even someone as adventurous as I am got to draw a line somehow of what is good for our aging body. I think this is a diet which I could take once every 3 months.


  5. viveka says:

    I totally agree with you about Chicago … and that is why it’s in my book one of the best food cities in the world. NYC isn’t close. Always exciting and fusion. I haven’t been to many Mexican restaurant … but I love Fajitas … and I done one of the best myself. *smile


  6. bebs1 says:

    Now I know where to bring you Viveka when you come to town. There is this authentic Mexican place which my Mexican friends love. No reservations, cash basis only and it is always filled with Mexicans. I think you will like it even if it is not fancy.


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