The Acapulco Insider, Issue #05: "Tamales & Salsa"

My first experience with a tamale was in college when my best friend ate a whole one, corn husk and all. I don't remember much else about my first tamale, but after eating hundreds of them in Mexico I do know one thing - I don't want to know what's in them.

Rosca - A Mexican Tradition

Tamales  

In Mexico, the 5th of January is "La Noche de los Reyes Magos" (The Night of the Wizard Kings - cool name). Family and friends get together to enjoy a special type of giant, donut-shaped sweet bread called "Rosca de Reyes". The catch is that each person slices his own piece, and if you slice into a baby plasic Jesus (one Rosca has at least several) you have to buy tamales for everyone on the 2nd of February, which is the "Dia de la Candelaria". Since I rather enjoyed the Rosca, I was lucky enough to slice into three of them.

Birthdays in Mexico

Birthdays in Mexico are usually pretty big deals. And since families here are generally fairly large, you end up going to a lot of them. Like many special occasions in Mexico, the party focuses around food. When it's time for the cake, everyone yells "Mor-di-da!" (Bite!) over and over until the birthday boy or girl takes the first bite of cake. An important Mexican tradition to remember is that they then shove your face into the cake as you take a bite, so bite quickly.

  Birthdays in Mexico

This Issue's Random Expedition - Salsa Dancing Lessons

Salsa Dancing  

I am envious. Mexican people seem to be born with the ability to move their hips in ways that seem impossible to learn through practice. But after two years of being a wallflower (aside from a few moments of liquid courage), I finally started to take salsa lessons. Having never been to a dance class before, I show up the first day wearing clothes suitable for going to a club, only to find everyone else wearing gym clothes.

We then proceed to do aerobic-type exercises for a half hour in the non air-conditioned room. I managed to survive and am now slowly learning the steps, but I know that the hip movements are going to be the most challenging part. I'll write a progress report next issue.