If we try to find something to fulfill our stomachs in a journey to Oaxaca, we have to try Tlayudas. For very hungry people, this Oaxacan dish, similar to a traditional pizza, is the right one. Tlayudas are large corn handmade tortillas, 30 cm. in the diameter, which could be found at any market in Oaxaca City or within the state but, a curious deed, is that I have only found that women from the Central Valleys elaborate this giant tortillas.
The classic Tlayuda is the large tortilla spread with "asiento" (it is some kind of the remaining of the lard, a grease, after frying pork steak and which settles down in the pan). After that, they add Quesillo, the local cheese which seems threads, chopped cauliflower, grilled Tasajo, the local beef steak, and of course, hot salsa made in molcajete (a carved stone shaped like a pan). Finally, the Tlayuda is folded and put on an open fire fed by charcoal in "anafres" in order to simmer it until it gets crunchy and toasted.
When you visit Oaxaca forget a show off attitude and try Tlayudas in street stands. Nowadays, Tlayudas include chicken, sausage, or, chili pork steak called "cesina", it depends on the preference of the client. You'll find Tlayudas in restaurants but, I am pretty sure, they are more delicious at street stands. The price of one Tlayuda is about 35 pesos but, if you would like to prepare yourself, the procedure is very easy. Ingredients can be found at any market.
Remember, if you come to Oaxaca and do not try mezcal, Tlayudas, grasshoppers, and mole, it is as if you did not. So, next time you are here, forget the busy schedules of guided tours; be a traveler, taste the living flavors of the place and be warmly greeted by the real people and culture.
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