With Marilyn’s recent passing almost a year after turning over the reins to her original founding partner in Mexico, Carmen Barnard, who along with Ana Elena (Ane) Martínez and Ricardo Muñoz, is fanatically committed to carry on this marvelous concept with a fine focus on Mexico’s food world. Some things are different than what is described below: Diana Kennedy is doing her own Diana thing, Rick Bayless is tremendously busy with his multiple staff training trips to Mexico and and has no time left to teach with us, Roberto Santibánez is busy impressing New York City with his marvelous food, for example- but, in honor of Marilyn’s work, we will not update much until we grow accustomed to her absence or find it strictly necessary. We have an array of Mexican Chefs come into their own, world renown and respccted, And, with none less than Ricardo Muñoz Zurita, who takes the time from his restaurants and research to join us on these trips, because first and foremost, we are ‘cuates” -friends the 3 of us: Ricardo, Ane and me, and grew up together under Marilyn’s crazy brainstorm, Culinary Adventures, Inc.
For over 30 years, Marilyn Tausend and her staff have been organizing culinary trips to some of the most out-of-the way and exciting parts of Mexico, acquainting participants with the distinct cuisine of this country. Each year, different regions of Mexico are explored with classes by both local cooks and often with such noted authorities as, Diana Kennedy, Rick Bayless, Ricardo Muñoz and Roberto Santibáñez.
Typically we start the trip by doing a little exploring at the local market to learn how to identify the various herbs, fruits, chiles and vegetables that play such a major part in the cuisine. We meet the people who grow and prepare the local foods and join them in the eating a sample of these foods and may put these culinary traditions into perspective through visits to the historical past seeing historical sites and museums.
Trips are conducted in various years to Oaxaca, Puebla, Tlaxcala, Veracruz, Tabasco, Michoacán, Jalisco, Yucatán and the state of Mexico, with new ones always being developed. The trips are designed for both food aficionados and professionals. The costs include all classes, meals, lodging, and local transportation. Lodging is based on double occupancy and a single supplement is charged for single occupancy.
I’m often asked what to expect if you sign up on one of my Culinary Adventures, so here is a brief preview.
In advance, you will receive a packet of materials with all sorts of helpful hints, from packing lists, to a guide to the regional foods, and detailed instructions for arriving at the airport, and how to get to your hotel.
Day 1 Most trips start in the early evening to allow for late arrivals. However, we do encourage participants to come in a day or so in advance so that they are relaxed and ready to go. We meet at our hotel, introduce ourselves and go over our week’s schedule. We usually have a cena or light meal with a sampling of traditional dishes.
Day 2 Our first full day starts with an introduction to the region’s ingredients, and then, in small groups, everyone is off to a local mercado or market to shop for some of these foods on their own.
After comida, you may explore one of the nearby historical or archeological sites. That evening will be your first class with perhaps Rick Bayless, Ricardo Muñoz, or Roberto Santibañez introducing you to the typical foods of the region.
Days 3-6 As we progress through the remainder of the days, there will be cooking experiences, demonstrations with talented local cooks, visits to places of culinary interests, and free time for shopping and personal exploring. You will eat in homes, at typical Mexican fondas in the colorful markets, and you will be introduced to Mexico’s incredible street food. We end with a final group meal that is enjoyed by everyone.
We hope that you can join us on one of our culinary experiences to the various regions of Mexico.
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