Loreto Cuisine | What to Eat in Loreto
Loreto offers the full spectrum of Baja California cuisine, featuring the most popular dishes from northern Mexico, such as fajitas and "machaca de res" (dried beef) to the most delicious seafood specialties, such as ceviche and fish tacos, fish fillets cooked in sauces, or abalone and lobster prepared in a variety of different ways.
In the bay area the best dishes are the seafood soups and chocolate clams served au gratin or in a pickled marinade. Other highlights include "almejas tatemadas" (toasted clams) which are prepared by cooking them on a bed of gravel that is covered in dry undergrowth and then burnt.
Regarding drinks, the most traditional are the "clamato", which contains tomato juice, spices, and clam juice. The tea and the liqueur made from the Damiana bush are also firm favorites, as are the red and white wines produced in Baja California.
One of the region's most original recipes is that of abalone or lobster chorizo, which are made using a technique similar to that used for pork chorizo, inherited from the Spanish, but with seafood. It is served bathed in a sauce made from onion, garlic, and ancho, guajillo, and pasilla chilis. It is seasoned with a dash of apple cider vinegar, as well as sea salt, oregano, and pepper to taste.
This famous clam and tomato juice was invented in the region and is very popular in bars for preparing different drinks and cocktails. It is normally dressed with spicy sauces, mixed with vodka or beer, and served with a stick of celery to stir with.
Damiana is a small bush with aromatic leaves that grows in semi-arid, rocky, and sandy areas. It has curative properties and has been used as medicine for the body and soul since pre-Colombian times. In this region it is drunk in a liqueur known as Damiana Guaycura, which contains a distilled extract from the plant, alcohol made from sugarcane, water, and sugar. Both cream and clear Damiana liqueurs are produced in the area.
This popular treat is also known regionally as "jalea de mango". Due to its high fiber content, this dessert is not as sweet as the ones made with guava or quince in other regions of Mexico, allowing its taste to be balanced with a slice of fresh cheese.
You'll find lots of atoles (hot corn-based beverages) made following indigenous recipes in this region of Baja California, created using cactaceas, cereals, seeds, and nuts. Some of the varieties you can try include the following: acorn, corn with beans, just beans, bishop's weed, poplar tree fungi with New Mexican chili, pine nut, dates, amaranth seeds, islaya cactus, goat nut, and either corn or mesquite husks.
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