Gazpacho, Morelia style

The gazpacho we encountered in Morelia was unlike anything we had tried before.  Certainly not cold tomato soup.  We loved that each bite hit all the notes we were looking for; sweet, sour, spicy, salty and refreshing.  Versatility is key here, and in my opinion, so is hand chopping the fruit and vegetables.  Sure, a food processor would make short work of it all, but you might not get such great flavour in every spoonful.

mercado-frutas

We first tasted this in Morelia, Mexico – where everything is fresh and delicious!  Even at home though, we have loved the refreshing dish.  Try serving it in small dishes as a palate cleanser for a Mexican fiesta ….

Everything finely diced:

2 cups jicama

2 cups cucumber

1 cup watermelon

1 cup mango

1/2 – 2/3 cup red or white onion

I say 1/2 – 2/3 cup of onion because it will depend on how pungent your onion is, and how much you love onion flavour, play with it.

1 tsp chile flakes

1/2 tsp salt

juice of 1 lime

juice of 1 orange

Stir this all together, and taste!!!  Every little bit of fruit and vegetable should be in each bite and you should love the way it all comes together.  If not – adjust!

gazpacho-morelia-style

As you can tell, this is no small bite!  – Small version in the market in Morelia.

 

 

Patzcuaro, Michoacan Jan 2015

What a lovely little Colonial town, smack dab in the midst of Purepecha country. All the buildings around the centre of town are white and red, and so beautifully maintained. Naturally, churches and squares everywhere, and the markets are amazing.

You never know what is behind a doorway in Mexico.  In this instance, our welcoming and comfortable casa was perfect.

You never know what is behind a doorway in Mexico. In this instance, our welcoming and comfortable casa was perfect.

How could you not love stepping into a front entry like this?

How could you not love stepping into a front entry like this?

We were fortunate to find an AirBNB place to stay, Casa Nana de Ree – and it is a beautiful place. Shared kitchen and common rooms, but 3 separate bedrooms to stay in. We chose the blue room, with a private bath.

Our blue room at Casa de Nana Ree - king size bed and private bathroom.

Our blue room at Casa de Nana Ree – king size bed and private bathroom.

Kitchen area - way nicer than my home kitchen.

Kitchen area – way nicer than my home kitchen.

For the most part, we had the house to ourselves, for 2 nights another couple were here from San Miguel de Allende, but they were out a lot. So nice to have space, be able to make a cup of tea or even dinner a couple of nights. After spending less than 100 pesos in the market, and 80 pesos for a roasted chicken, we had enough for 2 dinners and 3 breakfasts.

It's pretty hard to only buy as much as you need at the mercado - all the produce is so fresh and inviting.  Love having a kitchen to use.

It’s pretty hard to only buy as much as you need at the mercado – all the produce is so fresh and inviting. Love having a kitchen to use.

These chickens can be found everywhere - large pit with a fire in the centre and chicken on a stick, or goat on a stick, or even chorizo.  Just delicious.  They chop it up, put it in a container, squeeze lime and orange juice over and for 80 pesos they also throw in some orange habanero salsa.  Fabulous!

These chickens can be found everywhere – large pit with a fire in the centre and chicken on a stick, or goat on a stick, or even chorizo. Just delicious. They chop it up, put it in a container, squeeze lime and orange juice over and for 80 pesos they also throw in some orange habanero salsa. Fabulous.

You never know what is behind a doorway in Mexico.  In this instance, our welcoming and comfortable casa was perfect!

You never know what is behind a doorway in Mexico. In this instance, our welcoming and comfortable casa was perfect!

After a day of hiking, sight seeing or just being a tourist, it is pretty nice to be able to relax on these couches.

After a day of hiking, sight seeing or just being a tourist, it is pretty nice to be able to relax on these couches.

I'm not sure why but Patzcuaro had more old men sitting chatting in the plaza than any other place we've been - they were everywhere.  Socializing and usually laughing.

I’m not sure why but Patzcuaro had more old men sitting chatting in the plaza than any other place we’ve been – they were everywhere. Socializing and usually laughing.

We enjoyed Lupitas a couple of times in Patzcuaro - either for a meal or just a drink in this cozy bar.

We enjoyed Lupitas a couple of times in Patzcuaro – either for a meal or just a drink in this cozy bar.

Outside most of the cathedrals you will find a stall like this one, selling homeopathic remedies.

Outside most of the cathedrals you will find a stall like this one, selling homeopathic remedies.

Patzcuaro is well known for their handicrafts -these beautiful lights are just one example of the amazing art to be found.

Patzcuaro is well known for their handicrafts -these beautiful lights are just one example of the amazing art to be found.

All around Uruapan, and the entire way on the highway from Uruapan to Patzcuaro are avocado trees, as far as you can see.  So interesting to them alongside pine trees.

All around Uruapan, and the entire way on the highway from Uruapan to Patzcuaro are avocado trees, as far as you can see. So interesting to them alongside pine trees.

These photos were taken from the bus window, and hardly do the avocado groves (orchards?) justice.

These photos were taken from the bus window, and hardly do the avocado groves (orchards?) justice.

Being able to make your own guacamole and salsa at the end of a day and just sit with your feet up is so relaxing.

Being able to make your own guacamole and salsa at the end of a day and just sit with your feet up is so relaxing.

Perfect breakfast, fresh mangoes and avocado on toast with coffee.   How's my hair?

Perfect breakfast, fresh mangoes and avocado on toast with coffee.
How’s my hair?

Patzcuaro has been a great place to use as a base for seeing so much in the area, Quiroga, Tzintzuntzan, Isla Janitzia, Morelia and more.

However, the beach is calling our (my?) names so we are off for a night in Uruapan again (mainly to check out a restaurant we have heard about in yet another small town with a big name). Then, it is back to the beach area …..somewhere.

Hasta la vista.