Virtually every city block of Mexico City contains a tianguis (or some kind of its derivative), an open air market stop that originates with pre-Hispanic culture. Though it is not always convenient or feasible, I do enjoy patronizing these stands and stores because I feel like my pesos are going directly to help someone support themself, and not to a fat cat C.E.O. However, Mexico City also has many chain stores including US and European department stores, car dealerships, fast food joints, and the like. Mexico also possesses their own chain stores; among the most prominent are corner pharmacies,
restaurants and department stores,
and many more.
But the store I wanted to mention this time is one that I avoided patronizing for a long time. Found in malls and on many prominent street corners is the café El Globo.
Owned by the Bimbo bread group, El Globo café sells bread, pan dulce (sweet bread a la carte), donuts (donas), cakes, coffee, and a myriad of other delicacies. In our neighborhood, the ambiance is sparse and quiet, like a library, and much different from most independent Mexican pastelerías (pastry shops) that service a bustling clientele.
As I stated above, we try to avoid giving our money to THE MAN as much as possible, but idle hands are the devil’s playthings, and one morning while waiting for our laundry to finish (an aside: we call the gentleman who runs our laundromat, or lavandería, “cuarenta minutos” or “forty minutes” because, no matter when we get there and how little-to-no people are inside his establishment, he frequently tells us that a washer will not be available for 20-40 minutes), I strolled into El Globo to check out the goods.
And oh was I glad that I did!
Submitted for your approval, to the left a dona Homero (Homer [Simpson’s] Donut), and to the right, a new favorite, THE GARIBALDI! There is a rich tradition of sweet bread (pan dulce) here in Mexico that arose from both the Spanish and French occupations. Due to this confluence of events, we have the splendid pastry the garibaldi.
Here is a link to a great blog about the garibaldi, and outside of Mexico I will definitely try to make them, but while we’re here I’m hoping to purchase and eat quite a few more. We recently tried El Globo’s chocobaldi, which was good and very cocoa-y, and there are other special flavor and editions to try:
“Buen provecho otra vez” – Yepts