Discover the magic and the feast of flavors in each Yucatecan dish that you can plan to enjoy every day of the week.
When it comes to Mexican cuisine, it’s impossible not to think of the delights of Yucatecan gastronomy.
Yucatecan food is a perfect combination of the Mayan people’s diet and the products brought by the Spanish during the conquest.
These recipes are undoubtedly part of Mexico’s cultural heritage.
Did you know that until the mid-1980s, most Yucatecan households strictly followed the tradition of cooking specific typical dishes for each day of the week?
Many families in the Yucatan Peninsula still observe these customs. The origin of these traditions is uncertain, but it’s a delicious tradition to enjoy Yucatecan dishes every day of the week.
Monday: Frijol con Puerco (Beans with Pork)
Yucatecans are very faithful to their traditions, and “frijol con puerco” on Mondays is one of the most respected. It’s a straightforward but delicious dish, a combination of black beans in a broth with pork, epazote, and various spices. To enhance the flavor, it can be served with chopped onion, radish, cilantro, and even local avocado, along with a tasty chiltomate or habanero sauce.
Tuesday: Relleno Negro (Black Stuffed Turkey)
Undoubtedly, “relleno negro” is one of the most representative dishes of Yucatecan cuisine. This delicious dish is made from burnt red dried chilies, turkey meat, and hard-boiled eggs. This delicacy has pre-Hispanic origins and has survived over the years, adapting to modern times. The traditional way to cook “relleno negro” is underground to infuse it with a smoky flavor.
Wednesday: Potaje de Lentejas, X’pelón, or Garbanzos (Lentil, X’pelón, or Chickpea Stew)
“Lentejas,” “x’pelón,” or “garbanzos” stew is a nutritious and flavorful dish in Yucatecan gastronomy. It’s a delicious brothy stew made with lentils, x’pelón, or chickpeas combined with meat, chorizo, and vegetables.
Thursday: Tzik de Venado (Shredded Venison)
“Tzik” is a dish prepared with shredded meat, originally venison, but nowadays it’s made with pork or beef seasoned with salt, bitter orange juice, radish, cilantro, onion, and habanero chili. It’s served with tostadas or corn tortillas, strained black beans, and a habanero sauce. In recent years, venison has been replaced with beef due to restrictions on hunting this species.
Friday: Poc Chuc
“Poc chuc” is very popular in Yucatecan cuisine because it’s a simple dish to prepare, but it has a delicious and irresistible flavor. It consists of pork loin grilled over charcoal, seasoned with regional spices and marinated in bitter orange juice. It is served with rice, pickled red onion, strained beans, avocado, radish, and a chiltomate sauce.
“Chocolomo” is a delicious Yucatecan broth, a traditional dish in the region. It is made with beef loin, offal, bones, and vegetables such as pumpkin, tomato, radishes, onion, garlic, and chili. It’s also seasoned with bitter orange, pepper, cloves, oregano, cumin, cilantro, and mint. It’s often garnished with the traditional Yucatecan “salpicón” and served with rice.
Sunday: Cochinita Pibil
The jewel of Yucatecan cuisine is “cochinita pibil.” It’s almost mandatory for a family breakfast on Sundays. This traditional dish is made from marinated pork, using achiote seasoning, wrapped in banana leaves, and cooked in an underground pit. You can enjoy it in tacos or tortas, accompanied by pickled red onion and habanero chili sauce.
Mexican cuisine is a valuable collection of dishes and ingredients that, through their flavors and aromas, transport you to their roots and mestizo heritage. Tasting each of these typical Mexican dishes is a journey from pre-Hispanic times to new flavors brought by the Conquest, seasoned with spices from Asia and Africa. We invite you to embark on this flavorful and heartfelt journey through this Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.