Things to see and do in Valladolid:
- The main cathedral San Gervasio in the main town square is worth a visit.
- Cenotes, such as Cenote Zaki, which are natural pools, some underground. There are cenotes in town and in the surrounding areas.
- Ruins such as Chichen Itza, Ek Balam and Coba.
An artist's hotel
This hotel offers a welcome bowl of tequila and as part of the delicious breakfast, tequila coffee and pumpkin jam on toast. As they were building the hotel they discovered an underground cenote beneath, which guests can use as well as the swimming pools. The staff are particularly helpful and friendly.
What to buy in the market:
Other market treasures include various pastes which they call 'recado'. Bought by weight, recados come in green, red or black and keep for a long time. The red is made with achiote, the black with roasted chillies and the green from pumpkin seeds (recipe below).
Buy jicama (again check it in), poblano mild chillies and entire pumpkins infused with syrup.
I also bought seeds for growing Mexican vegetables and home-made chilli sauces.
I saw several whole agave or honey candied pumpkins with holes drilled in the bottom. These are October/November seasonal treats made for the Day of the Dead. Various gossiping Mayan grandmas gave me instructions on how to make this.
There is also a craft market near the main town square where you can buy light-weight colourful hammacks, Mayan style dresses and artisanal wares.
Pictures at the Market at Valladolid
Calabaza en tacha, candied whole pumpkin. Another recipe I must try.
Recipe for Mayan pumpkin seed dip 'Sikil pak'or green recado
A recado has several uses:
- can be used as a dip
- watered down and used as a sauce
- blended with oil to make a marinade
- added to stews such as pipian (recipe soon).
Everyone makes a different recado, every cook has a different spin. This is one option.
150g pumpkin seeds, toasted if you wish (I don't wish)
2tbsp sesame seeds
2tbsp groundnut oil
1tbsp pumpkin seed oil
1 jalapeno, toasted, deseeded
2 tomatillos (optional), dehusked, roasted lightly
3 cloves garlic
1tsp Mexican oregano
1tsp cumin, ground
1tsp white pepper, ground
1/4tsp cinnamon, ground
1tsp sea salt
Handful coriander leaves
Blend all ingredients together and salt to taste.