Yucatan Recipes + Maya Match Game

by ‎02-08-2013 09:48 AM - edited ‎07-25-2013 08:29 AM (1,734 Views)


Steamed Turkey in Mexican Achiote Sauce (Pavo al Vapor en Recado Colorado)

By Karen Hursh Graber


Achiote paste, a characteristic seasoning of the Yucatan, where it is known as recado rojo, has been discussed before in this column. Made from the seed of the annatto tree ground with cumin, cloves and peppercorns, it is found in the Hispanic food section of supermarkets north of the border, or can be ordered through an online catalogue featuring world-wide delivery. It is particularly complimentary to fish and fowl, especially when they are wrapped and steamed in the typical Yucatecan manner. Steaming the bird means completely carefree cooking- no basting, no turning, no worry about dried-out meat or burnt skin. This dish makes a great presentation at a buffet, where it can be served with a selection of salsas and baskets of warm tortillas, so that guests can make their own tacos.



  • 1 large turkey, 16-18 lbs.
  • 2 packages achiote paste (this will be about 8 oz. total)
  • 6 cups bitter orange juice (or 4 1/2 cups sweet orange juice and 1 1/2 cups fresh lime juice)
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons cumin seeds, toasted and ground
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup softened butter or lard
  • 6 banana leaves or enough fresh corn husks to line the roaster and cover the turkey
  • 3-4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 12-oz. bottles of beer

Place the turkey in a large roasting pan. Mix the achiote paste, juice, honey, cumin and oregano. Carefully lift the skin of the turkey and rub the softened butter or lard under the skin. Spread the achiote mixture evenly over the turkey and marinate for 3-4 hours.


Line a large steamer or roaster with half the banana leaves or corn husks; place the turkey on a rack, making sure to use all the marinade. Pour the beer into the steamer or roaster, cover the turkey with remaining leaves, and cover with the steamer or roaster lid, or with foil. Steam over high heat for 3 1/2- 4 hours or until the turkey is done. team over high heat for 3 1/2- 4 hours or until the turkey is done. Check the liquid level from time to time and add more beer or water as necessary. The steaming may also be done in a pre-heated 350º oven, until a thermometer inserted into the inner thigh muscle reads 180º-185º.


Place the cooked turkey on a platter and garnish with sliced purple onions and sliced avocados. Serves 16.


Yucatan Style Plantain Soup (Sopa de Platano Yucateca)

By Karen Hursh Graber

This delicious soup from the Yucatan uses half-ripe plantains, meaning green and yellow, not black and yellow. Use vegetable broth to make it vegetarian, if desired, and add more broth for a thinner Yucatan style plantain soup.



  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 half-ripe plantains, peeled and cut into 1 inch slices

Heat the olive oil in a stockpot, add the onion and carrot, and sauté until the onion begins to wilt. Add the garlic and continue cooking for another minute. Stir in the plantains, cumin and coriander. Add the chicken broth, bring to a boil lower heat, and simmer, covered, until the plantains are tender. Puree half the soup in a blender and return to pot. Alternatively, the entire batch of soup can be pureed for a smoother texture.


Add salt and pepper to taste, and more broth if desired. Serve hot, garnished with chopped cilantro. Serves 6.


Jicama and Mandarin Orange Salad (Ensalada Xec)

By Karen Hursh Graber



  • 1 ½ pounds jicama, peeled and cut into julienne strips
  • 1 lime
  • ¼ cup naranja agria (sour orange) juice or substitute 2 parts lime juice, and 1 part each grapefruit and sweet orange juice
  • 1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded and coarsely diced
  • 5 mandarin oranges, peeled and sectioned, seeds removed
  • 3 small, dried chiles, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
  • salt to taste


Peel jicama. The skin of this root vegetable will peel right off after you insert a knife between the skin and the flesh. Remove any traces of brown or remaining skin with a vegetable peeler. To keep the vegetable from discoloring as you work, rub it liberally with lime juice. Cut jicama into julienne strips. Toss in a large bowl with orange juice.


Peel cucumber, seed and dice. Meanwhile, peel oranges and separate into sections, removing any seeds. Toss oranges and cucumber with jicama.


Add chile and cilantro. Toss and check for seasonings. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


Coconut Shrimp (Camarones al Coco)

By Karen Hursh Graber


One of the signature dishes of Campeche cuisine, this combines the best of local shellfish with what might be the quintessential flavor of the tropics, coconut. At La Pigua, it is served accompanied by a homemade applesauce, an unexpected and surprisingly good complement.



  • 24 jumbo shrimp, peeled, leaving the tail and first segment of the shell intact
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 ½ cups corn flakes, slightly crushed
  • 1 ½ cups dried, sweetened shredded coconut, coarsely chopped
  • oil for frying


Soak the shrimp for one minute in cold water to cover, with the lime juice. Remove and pat thoroughly dry with paper towels. Mix the flour, eggs and milk to make a batter. Add salt to taste if desired. Holding each shrimp by the tail, dip into batter, then gently shake off any excess dripping batter. Coat the shrimp with a mixture of the cornflakes and coconut. Let stand on a rack for a few minutes to dry. This ensures that the coating will adhere to the shrimp.


While the shrimp is drying, heat a heavy pot with enough oil to fry. If using a frying thermometer, it should read 350º F. Fry the shrimp in batches in the hot oil, turning once, until golden, for a total of 1 minute per batch. Remove and drain on paper towels.


Serve with apple sauce or the dipping sauce of your choice (serves 4).


Don't Forget to Play the Maya Match Game.

Play here.


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by Community Manager ‎01-22-2013 01:54 PM - edited ‎01-30-2013 09:20 PM (4,946 Views)

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by on ‎12-26-2012 10:39 AM - last edited on ‎12-26-2012 03:09 PM by (1,504 Views)


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by ‎10-10-2012 11:12 AM - edited ‎10-18-2012 10:48 AM (12,561 Views)

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by ‎05-18-2012 10:58 AM - edited ‎05-22-2012 11:41 AM (5,578 Views)

Article supplied by TrueCar, AAA's preferred partner for Auto Buying


Regardless of whether you just got your driver's license or whether you've been driving since cassette players were standard equipment, auto accidents and driving emergencies are difficult to prepare for. Being a good driver means knowing how to respond to the unexpected, so who better to consult than the female athletes on TrueCar's "Women Empowered" racing team who dance with these unknown dangers at high-speeds and under intense pressure?



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by ‎10-18-2011 11:36 AM - edited ‎10-31-2011 11:12 AM (1,590 Views)

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by ‎05-03-2011 04:31 PM - edited ‎05-03-2011 04:33 PM (2,219 Views)

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by ‎04-06-2011 05:38 PM - edited ‎04-07-2011 09:24 AM (4,130 Views)

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by Community Manager ‎03-13-2011 08:57 PM - edited ‎03-13-2011 08:58 PM (4,152 Views)

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by ‎02-21-2011 09:34 AM - edited ‎03-11-2011 01:55 PM (2,518 Views)

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by ‎02-07-2011 09:36 PM - edited ‎02-07-2011 09:37 PM (1,416 Views)

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by ‎01-31-2011 11:47 AM - edited ‎01-31-2011 11:51 AM (568 Views)

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by on ‎01-21-2011 04:51 PM (694 Views)

You've really Dalí-ed up for us! Here’s a batch of some of the cool photos of folks wearing their Dalí mustaches as part of our Community contest. Post a photo and receive a FREE Dalí Face Fan, plus be entered to win the grand prize...Stop by often to view new photos!


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by ‎01-10-2011 03:14 PM - edited ‎01-12-2011 08:50 AM (2,033 Views)

You've really Dalí-ed up for us! Here’s a batch of some of the cool photos of folks wearing their Dalí mustaches as part of our Community contest. Post a photo and receive a FREE Dalí Face Fan, plus be entered to win the grand prize...Stop by often to view new photos!


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by on ‎01-06-2011 04:36 PM - last edited on ‎01-11-2011 11:51 AM by Community Manager (613 Views)

You've really Dalí-ed up for us! Here’s a new batch of some of the cool photos of folks wearing their Dalí mustaches as part of our Community contest. Post a photo and receive a FREE Dalí Face Fan, plus be entered to win the grand prize...Stop by to view new photos every day! 


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by ‎01-05-2011 04:11 PM - edited ‎01-05-2011 04:50 PM (2,111 Views)

You've really Dali-ed up for us! We've received dozens of cool photos from folks wearing their Dali mustaches as part of our Community contest. Post a photo and receive a FREE Dalí Face Fan, plus be entered to win the grand prize...Stop by to view new photos every day! 


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by ‎12-27-2010 09:27 AM - edited ‎12-28-2010 09:10 AM (932 Views)

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by ‎12-20-2010 10:28 AM - edited ‎12-20-2010 03:08 PM (952 Views)

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by ‎11-26-2010 09:21 AM - edited ‎11-26-2010 09:23 AM (4,173 Views)

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by ‎11-11-2010 07:45 AM - edited ‎11-11-2010 11:34 PM (681 Views)

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by ‎10-14-2010 02:56 PM - edited ‎11-01-2010 10:03 AM (1,179 Views)

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by on ‎10-13-2010 09:24 AM (695 Views)

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