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A Memorable Ramen Encounter


On a cold winter evening in Kyoto, I coincidentally found a minuscule ramen shop concealed in a tranquil rear entryway. Sitting at the counter, I watched the talented culinary specialist fastidiously... Read more

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A cup of raspados or raspas from Oaxaca Mexico's zócalo.

What: Also known as raspados, raspas are essentially snow cones: cups or plastic bags of shaved ice flavored by various syrups, sometimes topped with fruit and/or condensed milk (raspar = to scrape). They’re found all over Mexico, especially around the corners of zócalos. As might be imagined, they’re super refreshing on a meltingly hot day.

Where: We enjoyed our raspa in Oaxaca’s zócalo in the early evening. Shaved right off a block of ice, it was doused with tamarind syrup, which the raspador assured us was more traditional than some of the other offerings—flavors like strawberry and cappuccino, chocolate, lechera (condensed milk)—that are no doubt preferred by kids today. It’s very sweet and cold, like an extra-icy Slurpee.


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