I didn't do much shopping in Mexico, other than buying entirely too many "traditional" candies at the Mexico City airport. Cajeta
, a decadent goat's milk caramel, is a life-long obsession of mine, ever since it was first served to me as a tiny girl in Guadalajara. At the airport stall I discovered a delicious guava paste stuffed with cajeta and pecans that was out of this world, and a sticky yellow coconut confection that slammed me straight back to childhood. In fact, I may have to pick up a copy of Fany Gerson's much-lauded My Sweet Mexico: Recipes for Authentic Pastries, Breads, Candies, Beverages, and Frozen Treats—
hello, sweet tamales, tres leches cake, milk fudge, flan. (Although my waistline is begging me not to do it!) I tasted some of her treats at a Mexican-themed dinner at Txikito
last year and they did not disappoint.But I digress. One thing you truly shouldn't miss when traveling in Mexico is the indigenous incense, known as copal
, pictured above. It has a very particular smoky-piney-resiny smell that conjures up Indians, Catholic churches and desert nights. I find it mesmerizing, with a rich, heady smell reminiscent of frankincense and myrrh.