I’m slowly learning that Huatulco is a hidden gem for foodies. The food remains true to it’s Zapotec roots, in flavor and preparation, while incorporating influences from its newest transplants who come from around the globe.
Perhaps my favorite–not just night time–treat place is Paletería Zamora, which sits on a main corner of the zocalo at Santa Cruzita.
Paletas are a type of Mexican popsicle, made from fresh fruit and sometimes cream. I’m not that much of a sweets person, unless the sabor is–or is infused–with a complex, fresh fruit scent, especially tropical fruit. Paletería Zamora doesn’t just sell paletas. They sell paletas, of maybe thirty different flavors.
What I love is PZ’s helado (ice cream) and–as you’ll see below–my new favorite thing in the world, horchata.
Walking into PZ, a case full of fresh fruit and nut ice creams meet you. The nuez (pecan) is one of my pal’s, the painter Omar Rodriguez’s, favorite.
It’s so arromatic; fresh picked and roasted skin gives it an earthy, roasty smell. While the meat is sweet and buttery. That’s right. It’s sweet, buttery, and roasty at once. My favorite is the mamey (pronounced ma:h mé), an orange, fleshy fruit, with a skin, smaller than a cantaloupe, and complex as a papaya. The ice cream. I can’t even explain–except to say its got an almost potato texture, like the ube ice cream from Philippine cuisine (but ube is actually a purple root). Other flavors at PZ include fresh strawberry (fresa), and (in the pic below) Guayabana, a fruit with a large hard seed, that has a citrus scent and soft, stringy texture flesh.
My friend Veronica, who owns Casa Tulco and Casa Teca, where I’m staying, she introduced me to these delights. But it wasn’t until I actually visited PZ did I find the greatest creation of all time: the horchata de coco (coconut).
Once I tried it, I thought it was a cosmos joke. The world all the sudden became more magnificent than I thought it could be. I mean, coconut juice is a natural super food. It’s full of potassium and other replenishing minerals. Combine that with the flavor of horchata, a sweet milky drink made from rice or other seeds. But wait.
Below, you see the slices of young coconut floating (right, guayabana left) in the cooler. It’s ice cold. Cold in the way mineral water is cold. The minerals in the drink are colder than the liquid itself. The milk is fragrant and soft on your tongue. That’s right, the horchata actually feels soft as you drink it!
Enjoy these fotos.