Tostilocos, Doritolocos, ahhhhhhh, what? Culinary Goodness from the ground level, from the street, from the everyday.
Found this basic content via NPR and a series they produced a few years back: Borderland. It’s still available in their archives, and narrates various aspects of the busy southern border between Mexico and the United States.
As part of that feature series, one of the highlights (for me anyway) was this very Mexican and American street snack. The article called them Tostilocos (because the recipe called for using Tostitos brand tortilla chips). Whether you use Tostitos or Doritos or any other similar bag of flavored tortilla chips, it’s gonna be a legit snack blending north and south, and down-home authentic for sure. The introduction from the piece spells it out:
Tostilocos. Tosti, as in Tostitos. Locos, as in crazy.
Origin stories vary, but the snack has proliferated in Tijuana — and has crossed the border into Southern California, too.
Vendors like Fidencio Rodriguez set up outside schools, at the beach and next to long lines of people crossing the border.
9 ingredients. About $3 on the street.
Here’s how you make it:
SALSA VERDE TOSTITOS (snack bag size), (CUT LENGTHWISE);
PEPINOS (CUCUMBER) AND JICAMA; CUERITOS (PICKLED PORK RINDS),
CACAHUATES (FRIED PEANUTS),
CHACA-CHACA (TAMARIND CANDY),
CHAMOY (PICKLED FRUIT) SAUCE,
SQUEEZE O’ LIME
fr: TIJUANA, MEXICO. Sold on both sides of the border.
In this era of vocalized attitudes of nativism and anti-immigration in these United States, it seems appropriate to give similar voice to the counter opinion. Diversity and being inclusive and celebrating all flavors and colors and peoples, that is in fact a core strength of America, THAT should be respected and honored and protected.
Try the Tostilocos. It might just take you over the top if you weren’t already so inclined, to celebrate and seek to protect our very precious way of life, blended uniquely here in America. A mixed bag of goodness.
[photo credit: NPR]