Below are some photos of our Saturday shopping day in Coatepec.
These are wall paintings near where we parked the car.
(That's Jim's elbow in the one below)
We walked past a bus to our colonia at one of the major bus stops.
Yet again the Palacio del Gobierno has been painted. It is always painted a different color. This one is paler than most. In this climate, nothing stays freshly painted looking for very long.
The street is momentarily almost empty. Weird! It was a busy day in Coatepec. The Palacio is at one end of the city park, the Church of San Jeronimo at the other. The street I was standing on, on the left side of the Palacio leads to the market. Below is a picture from a recent blog post that shows you the market -- the big dominant orange structure -- from Cerro de las Culebras.
We started our rounds of the market going in on the left side. You can see that there are low rooves to the left of the orange building. It's down a step from the main market building, and there are lots of venders in this area, too. In the picture below, Jim is talking to one of the women who come and sell small amounts of stuff which they have grown or made at home. They line the sidewalk. He bought two gigantic chilex extranjeros.
Before we saw this bag of them (larger and clearer below) we thought pipián seeds were always green. I think maybe pipián is kind of a collective name for squash seeds used to make pipián sauce which is just delicious.
Sorting tomatoes. Ninety nine point nine percent of the tomatoes sold here are these Roma tomatoes which cook well.
Just beyond the tomato merchants you can see down an aisle with beans and such in sacks at a booth on the left and a restaurant on the right. These restaurants are very popular.
This was a display at one of the stalls. The plastic bags have veggies already chopped to put in soup. The vendors do the chopping. I've bought them and they sure make it easy to make good chicken soup. The gray stuff on the right is the prized corn fungus called huitlacoche which indeed is delicious. You can also see apricots and two kinds of mushrooms, which are in season now.
At this stall, the vendor was selling home-made stuff along with some other things. I didn't get the whole sign in the picture, but to the of right of the big pot, she was selling chile with panza, or tripe (stomach).
Stuff at another stall includes manteca de cerdo or pork lard, mole de Xico (the brown stuff) and goat cheese -- the white rounds stacked up next to the mole sign. You can also see next to Jim's hand and arm bundles of dried corn leaves for making tamales.
We now move into the main part of the main building. Here you see the traditional pinafore/aprons which are ubiquitous in our colonia among middle-aged and older women.
Jalapeño chiles on shelves:
This is a stall which changes its products with the seasons. Now you see Halloween masks and plastic flower dispays for The Day of the Dead. The man is making these displays. Above the masks, if you look carefully, you can see the structures the man is using as the basis for the floral displays. And a lot of other stuff.
The stands you see on either side of the walkway below are where I buy a lot of our everyday fruits and vegetables.
This is La Perlita, the butcher shop where I buy meat in Coatepec. It is on the outside of the main market building. It is supposed to be pasture-grown beef. It sure isn't fat and juicy like in the States, but it tastes good and is, if beef can be, probably better for the environment. It is definitely not industrial beef. The store also sells pork and sheep meet and chicken and sausages.
Leaving the market we pass a bakery with displays of sweets for the Day of the Dead. Below are chocolate covered skus:
See the little candy coffin to the left below? It has a little sugar skeleton in it.
These are, I think, covered with sesame seeds.
We drove to the supermarket, Chedraui. I had to get pet food and a couple of super markety things. Chedraui has EVERYTHING you could want in a supermarket.
Here is a picture of signs over the produce which I thought might interest you with their non-English names. And you'll notice, Chedraui is in hot competition with the Wal-Mart in Xalapa.
The market I think is a lot more fun. Generally the produce is better in the market -- fresher -- and the prices are, too.
That's all for now. Shopping here is not routine.