I have practiced eating a vegetarian diet for about 9 years now give or take a mouthful. I’m not great at it but it has helped me maintain a weight where I can still ambulate. I also have a tough time accepting meat production in the USA and I believe that humans will be lower on the food chain unless we get serious about eating lower on it as soon as possible.
So what does that have to do with these two pictures?
Since coming to Mexico on November 1 (2017) for our first extended stay in our winter home I have come to realize that it is tough eating a meatless diet when neither mi esposa nor I know Spanish. Sure, we use Google Translate and it has been so very helpful. But sometimes you ask a question and you get an answer in Espanol that is not expected or understood or even true. I have accepted simply going with the answer if it will help me move along with my day. I keep telling myself that I need to ask closed questions where the answer should be either “No” or “Yes.” That does not always work through because the two things Mexicans love more than a good party and their family are talking and sharing with strangers.
So I went to a panaderia this morning to get some bread and I saw this pastry on the left and asked what was in it. The woman working the counter misunderstood Miss Google Translate and asked me how many I wanted so I went with it and answered, “Uno.” She put it in a bag and I headed home.
Upon first bite I could not identify the ingredients but I knew our dog, Henry, wanted some. I gave him a bite and he almost knocked his sisters, Stella and Coco, over getting position for the next offering. After cutting the beautiful pastry apart I finally figured out that it was jamon. Ham was not real high on my dietary choices even before I headed for the door titled, “Lettuce Heads of Vegetarianism.” However, I have allowed myself some meat down in Mexico because I do not know Espanol, because I believe ( and have read and have to hope to high heaven) that the practices of local farmers is superior in raising chicken and pigs, and because these people eat as much meat as they can get their mouths around and I wanted some for myself.
BUT....please, please do not put ham (or jamon) inside my pastries. For godsake, get some almond paste down here so a needy, viejo Dutchman can have a pastry every once in awhile. I was raised on banket, ollie bollen, apple crisp and windmill cookies and the pastries in Mexico leave much to be desired. And, yet, we stay because of the people and warmth of their smiles and the fruit and vegetables and so many others things.
By the way, the picture on the right is my breakfast instead. The green paste is pepita paste (pumpkin seeds) ground up with spices. (After I asked a fourth time for its name I gave up and will ask again next time we visit their mercado de verduras.
And, The Street Dogs of Valladolid still do need our help so we are off to see what kind of mischief we can find on another day in the Yucatan.