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  • (lively salsa music)

  • - This is the definition of a meat sauna.

  • This is an ultimate fiesta in here.

  • It's just a party in the middle of the morning,

  • a meat party.

  • All the action, the energy in here.

  • The meat love is out of control.

  • (lively salsa music)

  • Good morning, I hope you're having an amazing day.

  • It's Mark Wiens.

  • I am in Oaxaca City and Oaxaca is known

  • for having some of the best,

  • one of the ultimate food cultures in all of Mexico,

  • so I'm thrilled to be here.

  • We're gonna walk around today,

  • we're gonna go visit some local markets.

  • We're gonna eat some amazing Oaxacan food,

  • we're gonna visit some attractions.

  • We have one full day in Oaxaca City.

  • We're gonna make the most of it

  • and I'm gonna share it all with you

  • in this video right now.

  • (speaking foreign language)

  • A cup of hot chocolate, mixes it up twirling that stick.

  • Oh man, this is a frothy, bubbly cup

  • of fresh hot chocolate, Oaxacan-style.

  • Oh, wow.

  • (speaking foreign language)

  • We decided to try a Tamal de Mole,

  • and it's steamed in a corn husk.

  • There's the masa and then you can see the Mole underneath.

  • Okay, let's try this.

  • Oh, oh it's so hot!

  • I love how that's just stuffed,

  • it's just packed, it's just oozing with Mole.

  • And you can taste the dried chilies in there.

  • You can taste a little bit of a chocolatey flavor

  • and then it's all wrapped up within that corn meal.

  • I need a sip of hot chocolate after that.

  • Oh, we are off to an amazing start.

  • That was just my first bite

  • and my first beverage of the day in Oaxaca,

  • and it was fantastic.

  • Oh, and that's making me excited.

  • We need the bunny hat.

  • (people chattering)

  • Oh that hits the spot in the morning.

  • That's wonderful.

  • - Mark, Micah wants this hat.

  • - Micah.

  • (upbeat music)

  • It's 8:00 a.m. right now

  • and we're starting off this morning

  • at Mercado Abastos, which is the biggest,

  • it's the largest market in Oaxaca City.

  • It's absolutely gigantic.

  • You can find everything here from fresh vegetables

  • and seafood, oh, lots and lots of seafood, to fruit.

  • Anything, (speaking foreign language).

  • Also, we're gonna also find a lot of pre-cooked food here

  • that we're gonna eat for breakfast.

  • If you need a new pair of underwear,

  • if you need a pet, if you need fruits and vegetables,

  • this is the market to come to.

  • Oh, we're coming to the food section right now.

  • (speaking foreign language)

  • (lively salsa music)

  • Some of the stalls are still opening

  • because I think they open around eight or nine,

  • this whole entire market,

  • but this stall back here is just absolutely packed.

  • It's called Comedor Lupita.

  • I'm not even totally sure what they serve yet,

  • but there are a lot of people here.

  • You know it's gonna be delicious,

  • so we're gonna stop here to eat whatever they serve.

  • (speaking foreign language)

  • Shrimp soup or fish soup?

  • Shrimp soup or fish soup?

  • (people chattering)

  • They put a ball of masa in the,

  • what is that called, a flattener,

  • and then they flatten it into a tortilla

  • and then the tortillas go

  • onto the comal,

  • which is a hot stone, and then they just bubble up.

  • So we got fresh tortillas here,

  • we got the Caldo de Pescado, which is with fish,

  • a fish soup, and then Caldo de Camaron,

  • which is the shrimp soup.

  • For the Caldo de Pescado, it comes with a whole fish,

  • just overflowing over the bowl.

  • I'm just gonna taste that broth first,

  • before I add some seasoning.

  • (people chattering)

  • Mm, it's a little bit tomato-y.

  • You can taste some herb in there.

  • And you do taste the full effect of the fish,

  • that's a little bit fishy.

  • I'm gonna squeeze in some lime.

  • (people chattering)

  • And they also have some onion and peppers and cilantro,

  • which is all communal, which you can add to your soup.

  • I'm gonna add a bunch of onions and peppers and cilantro.

  • Oh yeah, this is gonna be amazing.

  • And then also some cilantro.

  • (dishes clattering)

  • Okay, and then for this bite, I gotta go into the fish.

  • Oh yeah, I'm not sure what type of fish this is,

  • but it's a whole fish in here.

  • Look at all that meat on the side.

  • Oh wow, that's hot.

  • (people chattering)

  • Mm, oh the fish is awesome!

  • Mm, it's really like silky in texture.

  • Actually the broth tastes a little bit seafood-y,

  • but the fish is very like pure, very clean,

  • not fishy tasting at all.

  • I can't wait to try one of these fresh tortillas,

  • and I think the easiest thing to do, is to just roll it up

  • and you kinda eat it like bread on the side.

  • (people chattering)

  • Mm, mm-hmm, the tortilla's a little bit on the drier side.

  • You can taste the fresh corn.

  • Actually it only tastes like pure corn,

  • maybe just with water in it.

  • It's good, it doesn't taste like oily whatsoever at all.

  • Okay, one more addition to the soup

  • that I didn't know they even had on the table is this salsa.

  • I gotta add some.

  • (dishes clattering)

  • (people chattering)

  • - [Man] This is what made you want to come, right?

  • - Yeah, this market?

  • No, I had no clue where to come here.

  • We were just gonna walk around and see whatever looks busy.

  • (speaking foreign language)

  • Oh, oh that salsa is nice.

  • A little bit sour, and green chilies, which are,

  • I think they're roasted.

  • You can taste a smoky flavor to them.

  • Mm, this is a very soothing,

  • very warming dish to eat in the morning.

  • I'm loving it.

  • Next I'm moving over for the Camaron, which is the shrimp.

  • Squeeze in a little more lime.

  • Okay, take a look at this.

  • This is the same soup base,

  • but full of big shrimp with the head on, full shrimp.

  • So, I'll actually just take this guy with my fingers,

  • pluck off that head.

  • (lively salsa music)

  • Yeah, that's a good fresh shrimp,

  • then we follow with some of the soup.

  • Mm, yeah, this is a wonderful dish.

  • Taste that with a tortilla.

  • Both of the soups are excellent,

  • just depending if you want, and they taste the same,

  • it just depends if you want shrimp or if you want fish.

  • I like them both.

  • Probably I like the fish better,

  • it's a little more meaty.

  • Mm, mm, (speaking foreign language).

  • - [Woman] Ha, ha, ha.

  • Ha, ha, ha.

  • - One more thing that I had to try is their coffee,

  • because of how they serve it.

  • They serve it with a spoon, they serve it in a clay cup.

  • You can smell the coffee in there

  • and then you can also really smell chocolate in there.

  • It's okay to pick this up, right?

  • (lively salsa music)

  • - [Woman] Oh.

  • - Ah!

  • It's very light.

  • It's not like a strong coffee,

  • it's a very, very light coffee,

  • almost like you're just drinking water,

  • hot water with a little bit of coffee flavor

  • and then a little bit of a chocolate flavor,

  • but I mean, you can't think of it like an espresso,

  • or like a strong coffee.

  • And what's also cool is that you can see your reflection

  • in this bowl of coffee.

  • If you look down you could use it like a mirror.

  • Can you see my face down there?

  • This is a massive clay cup of coffee.

  • I'm gonna be peeing like crazy in about an hour.

  • This was a great place.

  • They're really friendly,

  • very popular local place for breakfast,

  • and yeah, that just hit the spot.

  • It's, you know, it's like very warm and soothing,

  • it's comforting.

  • That's what you need in the morning.

  • (people chattering)

  • (lively salsa music)

  • Okay, and I am loving the produce here.

  • There are so many different types of chilies, lots of fruit.

  • The passion fruit is gorgeous.

  • There are mangoes.

  • There are berries.

  • There's a lot of interesting and unique herbs

  • and vegetables here, and especially things

  • that look like they're kind of wild-foraged vegetables.

  • Yeah, this is a great market.

  • (people chattering)

  • (upbeat music)

  • One of the things that I notice just walking

  • around the market,

  • especially the vegetable and fruit section,

  • is that they have a lot of both tropical fruits

  • and vegetables, as well as more like dried,

  • arid-climate fruits and vegetables.

  • So it's a huge mix of such a diversity

  • of fruits and vegetables, and that's why, I mean,

  • that's part of what makes Oaxacan cuisine so diverse.

  • (upbeat music)

  • This is my kind of a market.

  • There's an entire lane that's just garlic.

  • There's so much garlic.

  • There's just an abundance of everything actually

  • in this market.

  • (speaking foreign language)

  • We're just completely lost within this network,

  • within this labyrinth of a market,

  • but we could see the smoke pouring out of this stall,

  • and we knew it was a place we needed to stop

  • for our next thing to eat.

  • (people chattering)

  • (tortillas sizzling)

  • She works so fast but you can tell she loves what she does.

  • I can't wait.

  • I can't wait to try it.

  • And those salsas just look insane,

  • in huge mortars, stone mortars.

  • (speaking foreign language)

  • (people chattering)

  • (speaking foreign language)

  • In order to make our Memelas, what she does is,

  • she first pounds the masa, she pounds the masa,

  • then it grills over the hot metal plate,

  • which is sitting over charcoal.

  • And we got the one with meat,

  • so she takes a really thin strip of meat,

  • she puts it into a little grill.

  • She sticks it underneath the hot plate,

  • which is where the coals are burning.

  • So that roasts until it looks like charred, fully charred

  • then she adds on something called asiento,

  • which is, she explained to us, is sort of like,

  • I think it's a lard, a pork lard.

  • Spreads that on, then she adds some of the salsa

  • from this giant salsa stone bowl, stone mortar.

  • And then after that, she sprinkles on some queso,

  • which is cheese and then finally we got

  • that piece of meat all on top.

  • It's so hot, it's so fresh.

  • Okay Carlos, you ready?

  • - [Carlos] Ready, let's do it.