The agricultural areas of adjoining towns are filled with herb crops that are used in several typical Mexican dishes.
For visitors who are watching their weight but don’t want to miss out on any of Mexico’s exotic ingredients, the fields in the State of Mexico cultivate papalo, watercress, coriander, wild greens (lamb’s quarter), smooth amaranth, spinach and purslane. Some of these herbs are combined with melted cheese and folded into a tortilla, providing a nutritious and tasty snack to enjoy while touring the city of Toluca.
When these plants are combined with pork or beef, they become classic dishes that are eaten in the heart of the Mexican Republic. While visiting, be sure to try cerdo con verdolagas (pork stew with purslane), chicken in salsa made from wild greens, chicharron (pork skin) tacos with papalo and avocado, and the traditional barbacoa, savory meat that is slow-cooked over an open fire, or more traditionally, in a pit in the ground while covered with maguey leaves.
Toluca is a traditional source of smoked and cured meats and sausages. You can purchase red or green chorizo in local markets, as well as the famous carne de obispo, a delicacy that reflects Spanish influence.