SOUTH of the border: SWEET thangs

RER 2.8.13

I could never forget about the sweet snacks that I chomped on while away (well, can’t really let go of the savory bites either), from candy like brittles to frozen treats to airy fluffs of meringue. Can’t I just go back for a little more of these sweet sensations? 

RER 2.8.13
coco dulce y pepita dulce
These sweet almost circles of goodness were perhaps one of my favorite snack foods we tried (emphasis on perhaps). They were amazingly sweet, crunchy and textured almost like brittles. These rounds were thick with crumbly like candy texture, and were littered with flavors, like pumpkin or coconut. I was lucky to try both. The pumpkin seed flavored one offered some savory and meaty elements to counter the extreme sweetness that surrounded the seeds. The softer texture of the seed actually added a kind of moist crunch to the candy like feeling of the snack. The coconut flavor did not taste like the sweet coconut  that we are used to, but it was a barky, stiff texture and flavor rendering the goody mildly hard to chew.

RER 2.8.13
mazapan de pepita
Another sweet treat that I got to experience, was unlike the brittle, soft and chewy. It had the grainy, gummy consistency of one of my favorites, marzipan. I could feel the crumbly crystals of the sugars in the dough. Unlike the marzipan we know made of almonds, this was created from ground pumpkin seeds. It was sweet and savory, chewy and satisfying. The texture was really exciting and familiar, but the flavor and ingredients were different.

RER 2.8.13
Who does not love the contradictions of meringues? They are light and fluffy, but also crunch and hard at the same time. Each time we got merengues they were two orbs fixed together with a citrusy sticky liquid, large enough to need almost two hands and messy enough to lick your fingers. My friend informed us that these homemade delights are traditionally made with lime, a tart contrast to the light sugary white. Candied lime rinds sometimes floated in the sugariness of the meringue. The only downfall (if this even counts) was that the constant heat and humidity of the area, made this snack for a sticky situation. The meringues were melting from the inside, oozy and sticky like syrup. Still delicious but the crunchiness of the slow cooked treat diminished and was only like a shell.

RER 2.8.13
boli de coco
Though I got this frozen treat at a taco spot (twice), my friend assured me that these homespun kind of ices are found all over, and in all different flavors. It was like a smooth sorbet and crystallized Italian ice, both at the same time. It came in a plastic bag with a knot at the bottom. The delicious filling is loaded into said plastic bag, knotted and frozen. To get into the insides you have to bite off one of the tiny corners and squeeze the frozen goodness out. Once I tasted it, I was addicted. My coconut frozen gem was sweet and creamy, and smooth save for a few chewy bites of sweet coconut. It brought me to childhood, and the imagined childhood of the kids of the region.

Now you got the sweet and salty sides of it… which snacks would you want to try the most? Maybe we should plan a trip…
RER 2.8.13

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food for thought...