Friday, March 28, 2014

Mercados across Mexico City - A Map!

As a board member of the Newcomer's Club of Mexico City, I was lucky enough recently to be asked to do a short presentation on eating healthy in Mexico City.  What an honor!  I don't, however, consider myself any sort of expert on healthy eating...I was, after all, trained in restaurants where butter and salt are the dirty little secrets! But when I think about eating healthy, I think about one of my favorite authors, Michael Pollen, and his mantra on food: 

"Eat food.  Not too much.  Mostly plants."

In preparing, I thought about this guideline, along with Michael's assertion that "food" is WHOLE foods (i.e., fruits, vegetables, meats, etc. that aren't processed or are minimally processed...what your great grandma would recognize as food).  I realized one thing I do know about eating healthy in Mexico City is where to get the freshest, most nutritious whole foods.  We are so lucky to have "mercados" (traditional markets, many outdoors) all over the city and on every day of the week.  Interestingly, mercados here are very different than the farmers' markets we're used to in the States.  The produce is generally the same as what's available in the supermarkets (with some exceptions, like specialty markets), except that is fresher and cheaper.  What a deal!  And we all know that fresher food tastes better, and is also more nutritious.

So that's what I focused on for my presentation to club members, along with some of my favorite recipes to make from what I buy at the mercado (stay tuned for my next post on Jugo Verde!).  I created a map using GoogleMaps, mapping the sites of 21 different mercados throughout the city (by zone), held on various days of the week, along with a little information about each.  I hope that all of you can use this to find a mercado that is closest or most convenient for you, and take advantage of this wonderful aspect of life in D.F.