Yucatán Food Recipes: Caballeros Pobres


We typically feature this mouthwatering treat as a dessert after Poc Chuc, our favorite tangy pork dish. Caballeros Pobres translates to “poor gentlemen,” but we’ve always thought of it as delightfully rich. Rumor has it that the dessert originated in Spain and was brought to the New World by the conquistadors. Some say it reminds them of French Toast, but it’s better than any French toast we’ve ever had; and Patti here at Hacienda Petac makes this dessert better than anyone we’ve ever met.



Large loaf of day-old baguette, approximately 1-inch think slices.







Whisk eggs, milk, a bit of vanilla and some sugar in a bowl. Dip the slices of bread into the batter, coating both sides, then place on a hot skillet. Fry on both sides.


Also delicious served with the following cinnamon-pecan syrup. Bake the slices of bread with the syrup, until it begins to caramelize.

(from http://www.bhg.com/recipe/caballeros-pobres-bread-pudding-with-cinnamon-pecan-syrup/)



1 cup water

1 cup sugar

1 cup brown sugar (piloncello)

grated lemon peel

4 Mexican cinnamon sticks

2 whole cloves

½ cup pecans or sliced almonds

1 tsp vanilla



In a saucepan, combine water, sugar, brown sugar, lemon peel, cinnamon, and cloves. Bring mixture to a boil then reduce and let summer until a thick syrup consistency, stirring throughout. Let cool, remove cinnamon sticks and cloves, stir in raisins and nuts.





Leave a comment

The Petac Paloma


Here at Petac, the Paloma is a favorite cocktail for both lazy afternoons spent poolside and lively dinner parties on the patio. Considered the official drink of Guadalajara, it is preferred by most throughout Mexico to the elsewhere-esteemed margarita. Light and fresh, the cocktail’s tartness cuts right through even the most oppressive summer heat.

Spanish for “the dove,” it is said that the cocktail was named after the “La Paloma,” a popular folk song written in the 1860s. Many credit the legendary Don Javier Delgado Corona, owner of the beloved bar La Capilla (“the chapel”) with the drink’s invention. Running the small cantina in the town of Tequila since the 1950s, Don Javier is likely responsible for many a thirst-quenching cocktail popular in Mexico.

Regardless of its inception, variations on the Paloma have been many over the past sixty years. Its simplicity lends itself to expansion and adaptation and so Palomas are now often made spicy or herbal, fizzy or flat, elaborate or classic. A very common version is made with one of several popular grapefruit sodas available here in the Yucatan.

At Petac, though, as we do with cooking, we like to craft cocktails with the freshest ingredients available, so our recipe includes fresh juices. We also like tradition, so the recipe we use is in the classic Paloma style. An easy drink to make, it is even easier to make a second and third.



Ingredients for the Petac Paloma:

– 2 oz. silver tequila

– 3 oz. fresh squeezed grapefruit juice

– 1/2 oz. agave nectar

– 1/2oz. fresh lime

– Club soda float


– Combine tequila, grapefruit juice, agave nectar and lime

– Fill shaker halfway with ice

– Shake 10 seconds

– Pour into iced tall glass

– Top with club soda

– Garnish with lime

Leave a comment

Yucatán Food Recipes: Cebollas Curtidas

These pickled onions accompany many traditional Yucatécan dishes and are a staple at Hacienda Petac’s table. Delicious with rice and bean dishes, alongside more complete meals like pescado en tikin-xic or even on a sandwich, the bright flavor of these onions will make you reminisce each time of the luxurious meals we create here at the Hacienda.


These pickled red onions enhance almost any Yucatecan dish.


2 red onions thinly sliced (julienned)

boiling water

juice of 2 limes

salt (to taste)



1. Place sliced onion in a heat resistant bowl.

2. Pour boiling water over onion, just enough to cover.

3. Let soften for no more than 5 minutes.

4. Drain completely.

5. Mix juice of lime evenly into onion.

6. Add a pinch of salt.


Let stand for at least an hour before serving, but the longer the better.



Leave a comment

Yucatán Food Recipes: Pescado en Tikin-Xic

Made with the classic achiote paste – a blend of cumin, pepper, cloves and the orange seeds of the annatto tree – this fish dish is traditionally wrapped in banana leaves and baked in the pibil underground oven. The charm of unwrapping banana leaves to reveal a beautiful and delicious dish makes pescado en tikin-xic a particularly exciting meal for large groups and one that we always like to make for guests of Petac.

Hand-wrapped banana leaves and some of the ingredients to make Tikin-Xic.


4lbs. high quality fish filets, white meat – we often use snapper

Walnut sized amount of achiote paste

½ lb. of white onion sliced in rings

Banana leaves

Salt and pepper

Juice of 3 limes and 5 sour oranges

One head of garlic roasted over flame



1. Dissolve the achiote paste in the juice of the sour oranges and limes. If the filets are from one large fish, cut into one person size portions and marinate the fish in the achiote mixture for fifteen minutes.

2. Banana leaves must be ready to use – for each portion you will need a section of banana leaf approximately 12-inches square.  Spread the banana leaf out and place the marinated fish in the center.

3. Place a slice of tomato and a slice of onion on top of the fish, then fold the banana leaf so that it is a compact little package.

4. Place into a large pyrex dish.

5. When everything is laid in the dish pour the remaining marinade into the dish along with the roasted garlic and a little salt and pepper.

6. Cover tightly with tin foil and bake in medium hot oven for 45-minutes.


To serve, carefully unwrap the fish, tear a piece of the banana leaf and put on the plate, then arrange the fish on top of the section of leaf.  Serve with rice and refried beans and onion salsa.

We cook our fish in the ground as a “pibil” over the hot rocks completely covered over with earth.  Unless you have a pit in the ground that you can do the same, Pyrex will be a good substitute.

Leave a comment

Authentic Yucatan Recipes—Caldo Tlalpeño

Dining at Hacienda Petac


A classic spicy and smoky Mexico soup, caldo tlalpeño will keep your insides warm throughout the “El Norte” winds of January and February. Our chicken soup for the Yucatecan soul is an all time favorite here at Hacienda Petac, and tastes best with avocado and cilantro added at the end.


Recipe: (for four)



1 Avocado

1 cup of garbanzo beans

3 plum tomatoes

½ white onion

1 tsp. chile chipotle salsa

1 ½ liter fresh chicken stock

½ cooked chicken breast, shredded

Salt to taste

4 sprigs of cilantro



Wash the dried garbanzos and soak overnight or boil for at least half an  hour, then let rest for a bit before boiling for at least two hours until beans are soft.


Chop the onion finely. Set aside. Scoop out the seeds of the tomatoes and discard. Chop the tomatoes finely. Set aside.


When the garbanzos are soft, drain them and then put them into the fresh chicken broth. Add the tomatoes and onion, the chipotle sauce, and salt to taste. The soup should simmer for at least one hour for the flavors to blend.


To serve, put a generous lump of shredded chicken into the bottom of a soup bowl, add the soup, and garnish with three or four chunks of avocado and a sprig of cilantro.

Leave a comment

Yucatecan Food Recipes: Poc Chuc

This tender and tangy pork specialty, flavored with sour orange juice, achiote, and onions, is one of our favorite Yucatecan food recipes. Before refrigeration, pork was salted for preservation and acids like orange juice were added to dishes to combat the saltiness. We have been told that this particular recipe originated in the historic town Mani, just about an hour away from Hacienda Petac. We slow cook it over a charcoal fire rather than a pan on the stove, and serve it rolled into corn tortillas. It is perfect following sopa de tortilla and with a cold beer!


naranja agria


Ingredients: (for four)

5 or 6 tender filets of milanesa of pork – try to choose ones without sinew

Juice of 2 sour oranges

3 cloves of garlic, minced

Salt and pepper

4 halves of sour orange



Marinade the pork filets in the orange juice, minced garlic, and a dash of black pepper and salt for half an hour.


Meanwhile, prepare a charcoal fire. When the fire is ready, cook the pork filets. Be careful not to overcook them. Since they are thin, they will only need to cook a few minutes on each side.


To serve, put a filet and a half on each plate along with the juice of half a sour orange, roasted tomato chiltomate sauce, and roasted red onion salsa.

Leave a comment

Yucatán Food Recipes: Panuchos

This classic Yucatecan snack can be found at restaurants and street vendors all around our area. Our favorites, though, are the ones we make ourselves. Here at Hacienda Petac we begin the cooking process by puffing up our homemade tortillas and filling them with little pockets of black beans. Read on to find out the rest of our recipe.




Ingredients: (for four)

½ kilo masa

¼ large white cabbage very finely chopped

1 red onion finely sliced and soaked in juice of a sour orange

1 plum tomato finely sliced in strips – discard the seeds and pulp

5 leaves of fresh lettuce

½ large white cucumber  (if not available, can substitute green) seeded and sliced and cut in half moon slices.

½ achiote grilled chicken – shred the meat

1 avocado

1 cup of black bean sauce



Make fresh corn tortillas with masa and water. When they puff up, slit them open and fill with a teaspoon of the black bean sauce. Then fry them in hot oil until they are golden brown. Drain them and set aside.


Once all the tortillas are fried you can assemble the panuchos. Spread out the tortillas on a clean surface covered with paper towels. Layer them. First put down a piece of lettuce, then a spoonful of the finely chopped cabbage. Next, add a slice of cucumber, then a tomato strip, followed by a generous spoonful of shredded chicken and a bit of the finely sliced pickled red onion.  Crown with a thin slice of avocado.


Serve on a platter accompanied with guacamole and tortilla chips.

Leave a comment

Yucatan Food Recipes: Sopa de Lima

Sopa de Lima (Pronounced: SO-pa da LEE-ma) or Lime Soup is one of the most famous dishes in the Yucatan. It is a broth-like soup made from lime, chicken stock, shredded chicken and crispy tortilla.


We serve it at the Hacienda most often as a course during dinner. (It’s one of our favorites.)


Yucatan Food Recipes


How to make it:


8 servings:


Make approximately two quarts of chicken broth.  Start with one whole chicken, add a little bit of salt and pepper to taste.


After chicken is well cooked and broth is rich with chicken flavor, strain the broth off and adjust the flavor.  Save the chicken as the breast meat will be used. Save the broth also as it will be mixed with the following ingredients:


In a large sauté pan with 2 TBSP vegetable oil, cook 3 large sliced/julienned green sweet peppers, two small to medium sized white onions, also julienned, and four firm plum tomatoes, also julienned.   Do not cook longer than five minutes in the pan.


When this has been sautéed, add all to the two quarts of chicken broth and add Mexican oregano – about 1 tsp.     Simmer all these ingredients until flavors have blended together. Check salt and now if you need to, you may add a little bit of chicken bouillon to enhance chicken broth.  Cook about twenty minutes.  Add the juice of four or five limas but do not boil the soup now, or the lima flavor will go bitter. Just heat through.


Before serving you must slice julienne sized strips of tortillas and fry them.   A good handful of freshly fried strips are to be put in the bottom of each bowl with a good handful of the shredded chicken breast meat on top.  Then ladle in a heaping portion of the broth and vegetable mix on top of the chicken.   Garnish with a slice of fresh lima.

Leave a comment