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The news of a two-week celebration of Mexican food was (mariachi) music to my ears — and my stomach. From April 20 - May 3, all Central Market stores are featuring the authentic flavors of Mexican cuisine during their Pasaporte Mexico event. http://passport.centralmarket.com/ Ole!

To bring us this genuine Mexican experience, Central Market’s curious culinary adventurers set off on a tasting tour of Mexico. They traveled from mountains and deserts to rainforests and crystal blue coastlines in search of Mexico’s traditional cuisines. What they found was an array of unique and extraordinary regional dishes, honed by the diverse landscapes and thousands of years of history.

Lucky for us, they brought back their very best discoveries, and during Pasaporte Mexico, all of their stores will overflow with Mexican culinary treasures, including boldly-flavored chef-prepared foods, sweet bakery treats, exclusive wines, fresh seafood, olive oil, honey, chocolate, coffee, handmade pottery, and so much more.

Regional specialties and traditional flavors like Oaxacan style mole, capirotada bread pudding, and nopales salads made with prickly pear cactus leaves will take you (and your taste buds) on a vacation through Mexico from the Sea of Cortés to the Yucatán Peninsula.

Free food and wine at Paseo de Pasaporte Mexico kick-off event
Mark your calendars for Friday, April 22, from 5-8 p.m. and kick off this exciting two-week fiesta with a Mexican tasting tour of your own — through the aisles of Central Market.

The stroll — or paseo in Spanish — is free and will feature samples of the finest food and drinks from Mexico including tropical fruits, olive oil, salsas, coffee, wine and plenty more to keep you curious about what’s around the next corner. They’ll also be serving tacos prepared on a traditional cast iron comal and have churros and Mexican hot chocolate stations.

So, let’s recap, shall we? Tacos. Churros. Wine. Samples of tasty authentic Mexican foods everywhere you look. Your Friday night is made! Register here. http://www.centralmarket.com/cooking-school.aspx     

Fresh chef prepared items and street market fun
Central Market’s chefs are busy preparing everything from pozoles and postres to moles and más, filling their fresh food cases with incredible options for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And if you’re looking for something to do this weekend, stop by the authentic street market Friday, Saturday, and Sunday where their chefs will create a menu of Mexican favorites right in front of the store. Look for three varieties of tacos, including tacos al pastor with spiced pork, flavored with pineapple and chilies, elotes, and several types of quesadillas. (I can’t wait to try the truffle-like Quesadilla de Huitlacoche!)

Bakery treats = nom nom nom
The Central Market bakers wanted in on the celebration, too, and they’ll be making a variety of items including the home-style favorite pan de elote, a rich, sweet cornbread, and soft, buttery pan de yema rolls. I’ve also learned you’ll find chocoflan: caramely flan on top of chocolate cake.  It looks crazy delicious — definitely a dessert that would get people talking at your patio party!

Cooking Classes and Dinners
Some pretty famous Mexican chefs will be visiting stores to host cooking classes, wine dinners and demos. You can read more about all of the classes here, http://passport.centralmarket.com/#chefs and keep an eye out for Pati Jinich of the PBS series Pati’s Mexican Table; Iliana De la Vega, owner of El Naranjo restaurant in Austin, Texas; and Margarita Carrillo Arronte, acclaimed cookbook author and chef.  

With so much to explore (and eat…and drink), you’re sure to find new favorite flavors inspired by our friends to the south at Central Market’s Pasaporte Mexico!

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