Isla Mujeres Attractions

Tastes of the Yucatan Peninsula Part 1: Marquesitas

If your impression of Mexican food doesn’t extend beyond tacos and guacamole (good as those classics are), you’re in for a scrumptious and palate-expanding lesson during your visit to Isla Mujeres!

Truth be told, Mexican cuisine is one of the most diverse and complex in the world. Given the geographic spread, varied ethnic heritage, and multicultural history of the country, there’s some fascinating regional cookery, too, which makes touring Mexico one heck of a culinary safari for any hungry epicurean.

In this two-part blog post, we’ll take a look at two of the signature Yucatan dishes you can enjoy during your Privilege Aluxes getaway to the Caribbean paradise of Isla Mujeres!

Let’s start with a real street-food staple: marquesitas. One bite of these dessert snacks, and we think you’ll agree they might as well be listed in the dictionary under “irresistible.”

Dissecting the Marquesita

A marquesita is essentially a Yucatan Peninsula version of the crepe, which itself is rather like a super-thin pancake. Marquesitas typically come stuffed with shredded cheese and some sort of sweet filling.

More often than not, the cheese, interestingly, is a European variety: Edam from the Netherlands. Introduced into Mexican cookery in the 19th century, this queso de bola has a gentle flavor that jibes nicely with the sweet component of the marquesita.

What supplies the sweet? The sky’s really the limit. Often it’ll be Nutella, chocolate sauce, peanut butter, or jam. The chef may also stick bananas or some other solid fare into the mix.

Here’s how a marquesita is made. Batter made from flour, milk, and eggs is spread onto a hot griddle rather like a waffle maker. Once it’s gotten a bit crispy, the preparer spreads the filling and the cheese and rolls the whole thing up in a cylindrical package. It’s a handheld tube of deliciousness, offering a bit of crunch and a bit of chewiness—a textural one-two punch matching the sweet-and-savory, yin-yang thing going on inside.

(Learn more about marquesitas here and here—although, really, you can only read so much about these puppies before your salivary glands go haywire.)

Tracking Down Marquesitas

It’s not hard to find food carts on the streets of Isla Mujeres serving up marquesitas made fresh-to-order over an open flame. Whatever filling you choose, your first taste of a Yucatan-style crepe is almost assuredly going to be the opening bite of a lifelong love affair.

Maybe you’ll try making them at home on the heels your Privilege Aluxes holiday! Although it must be admitted a marquesita tastes especially good after a day of beachgoing and snorkeling under the Caribbean sun.

Tune into our next blog post for an expose on…tamales!