Saturday, December 12, 2015

Emara Antojitos Yucatecos in Cancún, Mexico

From left: cochinita pibil panucho and lechón con chicharrón empanada

With a free day today, I made sure to get away from the confines of the resort and head into town. I thus started at Parque Las Palapas, a bit of a town square with some food stalls. I wasn't very hungry yet though, so I kept going, passing a few restaurants before eventually landing at Emara, a little place serving Yucatan street food across from Mercado 28 (Av. Xel Ha, Sm 27, 998-884-3904). I picked up a panucho on the left and an empanada on the right.

The better of the two was the empanada on the right. Unlike the heavy pastry-based ones in Argentina, this was much thinner. And in my case, it was filled with lechón con chicharrón, something my taxi driver suggested that I get. That's not to say that there was anything wrong with the panucho on the left (basically, the tortilla is filled with black beans), but I just couldn't figure out what the big deal was about the cochinita pibil topping on top.

See, cochinita pibil is a Mayan slow roasted pork from the area, and my friends in Mexico City have talked about it a lot. I've had it before, but it never blew me away. Maybe I just never had a good rendition of it, and thus figured it best to give it another try while I was here. And yet I still couldn't figure out what was so good about it, as it wasn't particularly fatty nor spicy. In that sense, it was just a lot of lean shredded protein. It still went down easily once I garnished it with some salsa and onions though.

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