Friday, July 03, 2009

Who moved my pork cakes?

Consider this a eulogy of sorts.

Last night we went to
Tu y Yo, the bestest Mexican restaurant in Somerville (and beyond).

We know the menu pretty well at this point, so it didn't take us long to order.

The Boy chose the cochinita pibil and I asked for the tortitas de puerco, which are fist-sized patties of shredded pork in a sauce of
xoconostle, a sweet-sour cactus fruit. This has become one of my favorite dishes, a perfectly balanced blend of flavors and textures.

When my parents were visiting, we brought them to Tu y Yo and my mom had them. She loved them too.

"I'm so sorry," our lovely waiter said. "I don't think we have any more."

Okay, I figured, they're out. Not surprising; we're coming up on a holiday weekend, and—

"We're changing the menu," he continued, "and that's one of the dishes we've discontinued."


Okay, must recover. Let's go with the usual Plan B: the Pollo Yunkaax.

"Yes, that we have," our waiter said, looking strangely apologetic. "But ... um ... we'll be taking that off the menu soon as well."

And so, we come together to remember the loveliness of Pollo Yunkaax.

Kind of startling if you haven't encountered it before. So green! So vibrant! (That's the spinach and cream sauce, by the way).

Inside, its secret weapon: cuitlocoche.

The menu at Tu y Yo describes cuitlocoche as "corn's black mushroom," which is a polite way of saying "a
disease of maize caused by a pathogenic plant fungus." (Which would you rather eat?)

The flavor is neither mushroomy nor moldy; it has a light, fresh, subtle earthiness. Together with the moist chicken and the creamy sauce, it makes—um,
made—for a perfect summer meal.

I ate extra-slowly, realizing this was probably the last time I'd get to taste this particular dish.

The Boy consoled me with forkfuls of his fabulous pibil.

As usual, the beans were divine.

So, Tu y Yo, I have just two questions:

1) Can I get the recipe for the tortitas de puerco (and a source for xoconostle)?

2) Do you need someone to taste-test the new menu??

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Blogger AlizaEss said...

Sea beans and corn fungus?! I love your site!

12:10 PM  

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