The traditional food of the state of Campeche in Mexico – or Campechano cuisine as it is known – has a number of key characteristics. Seafood and fish are on every menu, as the state of Campeche has a vast and abundant coastline that stretches along the southern part of the Gulf of Mexico. Back on land, the steamy climate of the lowlands provides the perfect environment for growing a wide variety of exotic fruit and vegetables which feature in the markets, at roadside cafes and on restaurant menus.
Below are some popular dishes that highlight the food of Campeche in Mexico.
Camarones al Coco – or Shrimp with Coconut
The shrimp are ‘crumbed’ in shredded coconut and corn crumbs and then then deep fried until crispy. Here is a recipe from Pati Jinich with mango habanero salsa!
El Pulpo – from August to December many restaurants serve octopus cooked in various dishes. These include octopus in its ink, octopus in garlic, octopus in pickled onions, fried octopus and octopus ceviche.
Pampano en verde – A fish dish in a sauce of green chilies and green tomatillos
Pan de Cazón – or Bread of Small Shark. This is a speciality dish of Campechano cuisine. It’s prepared much like a lasagne but using tortillas instead of pasta and layering them with cooked shark meat, black beans or refried beans and finishing with a tomato sauce all over the tortilla stack.
Panuchos – a street food speciality. They are thick tortillas, fried, stuffed with beans, and topped with cabbage and your choice of meat, tomato, pickled red onion, avocado, and jalapenos.
Postre de Chicozapote – a dessert. Made from chicozapote fruit, the sap from this tree is what chewing gum was originally made from. It has a sweet, malty taste. This dessert is made in the style of a crème brulée.
Dulce de Papaya Verde – a dessert. Made from green papaya cooked in a glaze of sugar and honey.
Aguas frescas – a healthy flavoured water
These healthful, non-carbonated drinks are made with fresh fruit juice and water such as lemonade, orange, watermelon, rock melon and pineapple.