One thing which Mexico City is well known for is its street food options, sadly however many also associated this with an affliction known as Moctezuma’s revenge, also known as stomach problems as a result of poor quality food. The reality however is that you do not have to avoid the taco stand because of this fear, it is about making the right decisions instead, and following some smart tips to avoid those places which may cause you damage.
Here then, are some tips to bear in mind when buying street food here.
Smell What Sells
I was lucky enough to have a friend living in Mexico City,, when I first came down here, who helped to teach me the ropes with regards to the street food etiquette here in the capital. The best gauge when it comes to which is the best street food stand to eat from, is to find out where the locals are eating. If you see a taco stand and it has plenty of people there or a queue of people waiting, then this is a place where you should be eating. If a street food vendor makes people sick because of the way in which they prepare or store their food, it won’t be long before eaters recognize this and start to ignore them. Citizens here love their food, and they won’t accept poor standards.
The best way to avoid any issues with the food is to just take a look at how they are preparing the food, where the meat is stored and what their general hygiene is like. If you see a street food stand and they are cross-contaminating or not washing their hands in-between food prep, this is one which you should be certainly looking to avoid.
Watch The Salsa
Most street food vendors will have red and green salsa on offer, you have to always ensure that you add a little to your plate and then try with your finger before you spread sauce all over your food. Sometimes the green one is hotter, often it could be the red one which is hotter, it really is a lottery. In terms of heat you’ll find some salsas which are slightly hot and others which will melt your face. Have a try, test the water and then dive in with the salsa.
If you don’t know what certain meats are then I would say just give it a try, they cook meat deliciously on the streets of Mexico. If however you are a bit picky with your meat then be careful with this, as they will cook up pretty much every part of the animal. Brains, tongue, feet, there is nothing that goes to waste here so ensure that you are buying something that you know you will like. If you aren’t so picky, then go ahead and take a lucky dip.