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There’s no two ways about it – Mexicans just love lime.
These tangy little bad boys are squeezed over fish tacos, dunked in every alcoholic drink and used almost like seasoning, along with salt and pepper.
It’s no surprise then that sopa de lima is a local favourite. A whole bowl of lime-rich broth flavoured with garlic and onion, sopa de lima is scattered with chicken and topped with crunchy strips of tortilla.
To complete the citrusy picture, order a michelada alongside your sopa. Mexico’s answer to a Bloody Mary, this spicy tipple replaces vodka with local beer and involves – you guessed it – a generous drizzle of lime.
If you only try one traditional dish in Cancun, it has to be cochinita pibil – roasted suckling pig.
First, the meat is rubbed with achiote paste and a special spice mix before marinating overnight in bitter Seville orange juice. The next day, it’s wrapped in banana leaves and baked in an earthen pit until it is smoky in flavour and falling into tender pieces.
After all that, the cochinita is served with soft tortillas and pink pickled onions, only to be devoured in seconds. The taste is hard to put into words but, trust us, one bite and you’ll be hooked.
You’ll always find unhelpful people ready to share horror stories about food poisoning on the road, but take these tales with a healthy pinch of salt. If you let fear hold you back from trying Mexico’s famous street food, you’ll be missing out.
Simply pick a stall that seems popular with the locals and chomp on everything from sugar-spiked churros to chiles rellenos: poblano chillies stuffed with beef, pork, raisins, capers and olives before being coated in batter and fried.
While you’re at it, be sure to try tamales, tasty packages of corn-based dough stuffed with practically anything and steamed in a banana leaf.
You’re on holiday, so forget about your waistline.
Instead, feverishly work your way through a ceramic bowl of melted cheese before it starts going clumpy. Because nobody likes clumpy.
Not quite as soupy as the nostalgic fondue of those ‘70s parties, queso fundido (which translates as ‘deep cheese’) is a bowl of playfully stringy Oaxaca cheese served with all kinds of dipping instruments, including tortillas, poblano chillies, chorizo and even the odd chunk of cactus. It’s fondue, but not as you know it.
There are only two things to do after a cheese feast: burn off the calories in a club or relax back with a cold drink and give your belly a break. Visit our Cancun nightlife page for suggestions on where to go next.