If I had to describe my cooking it would be something along the lines of jet-setting around the globe from the comfort of my very own kitchen. I may have a burst of Asian flavours bubbling in my wok one week and a streak of Italian comfort foods the next. Other days I’m swept away by trying my hand at Persian ash, rolling out dough for stuffed pierogies, roasting chilis and braising pork belly for a taste of the Yucatan or hacking away at the tough skin of the cassava root for a Brazilian moqueca. But wait, there’s more!
Meandering the streets and open-air markets of Mexico you’ll find push-cart vendors selling varied items from chapulines (fried, spiced grasshoppers) to squash blossom tacos. Street food is commonplace and abundant as a means to a living for some locals and a way to experience a culture and a country for some tourists (like myself.) I basically ate my way through the Zòcalo of Oaxaca!
It was here, on the streets of Oaxaca where I came to love Oaxacan string cheese, churros, atoles, memelas, empanadas, micheladas and fresh fruit cups with a hint of limòn and chili. For one who loves food and enjoys trying new things, authentic things, the street foods of Oaxaca are as enticing as a neon-flashing, whirling carnival is to a young child. Eyes alight with excitement, heart racing with content.
Walking away from the cobblestone streets of Mexico and taking flight to land back home on the paved streets of Grand Rapids (which has is pleasantries) however, a street food smorgasbord is not one. I found myself out of luck when I had a hankering for a piping hot memela fresh off the griddle and decided that I’d have to recreate my street food loves on my own.
Lucky for me there are a few latin markets nearby and it just so happened that one day, as I turned the corner to enter the parking lot, my eyes lit up with excitement and recognition, right there on the street corner was a push-cart vendor selling fresh fruit cups with limòn and chili as well as elotes!!!
As exciting as driving around and hunting down a push-cart vendor may be, I also discovered the ease in which making my own fresh fruit cups are. They taste amazing, and are great for summer parties with their vibrant colors, utility and refreshing qualities.
Mexican Fresh Fruit Cups
Any combination of fresh fruits and vegetables:
Watermelon, Mango, Pineapple, Jicama, Cucumber, Muskmelon, Honeydew or whatever else floats your boat!
Fresh limes Tajin or Chili Piquin (I prefer Tajin because of its sour and spicy taste)
Peel then slice or dice the fresh fruit and place into a serving cup.
Generously sprinkle with Tajin and then squeeze atop fresh lime juice. EAT!