In Mérida, discover the plant food culture of the Maya

What's most striking about Yucatan is how connected the everyday person is to where their food comes from. The pride they have in their cooking traditions, the casual ease with which they detail family recipes, the widespread knowledge of growing seasons and indigenous plants.

Erin Gomez Danielson, Merida Lead
pink dragonfruit with golden tips
Pitahaya, native to Yucatán

Fall/Winter Class Series - reserve your space now!

Cook Plant Foods of the Yucatán Every Day!

3-class series on consecutive Tuesdays.
Sessions begin: Oct 8 / Nov 5 / Dec 3 / Jan 7

Celebrate regional fruits, vegetable and herbs of Yucatán, by learning how to integrate them into your daily diet.

Under Erin’s guidance, explore new ingredients and prepare them in different ways. Rather than relying on recipes, this class will focus on techniques, gaining confidence in experimentation and –of course– enjoying the delicious ‘fruits’ of your labor! 

Women learn how to use tortilla press at a cooking class in Merida, Yucatan

Single classes as space permits

EACH CLASS 3.5-4 Hrs

More workshops and tours

Mérida Community

Erin Gómez Danielson

Mérida Lead

Erin Gómez Danielson

I was born and raised in the foodie Mecca of the San Francisco Bay Area, California, and am a certified Natural Chef with ten years experience in professional kitchens. What I most love about living here in Merida is how integral food is to the culture and how willing locals are to share it with everyone who visits.

My Merida-born and bred husband and I moved back to his home city in 2014 and we now have two young children. I’ve spent the last four years learning about Merida, Yucatán and Mexico from everyone I meet here; be it what food to bring to a party, how to properly fry masa for panuchos, or how to drink your cerveza like a local.

I’m honored to collaborate with Frutas y Verduras Mexico in creating a tour that brings the proud plant food heritage of this region to a wider audience.

Susi Noh Un

Teacher: Corn to Comal

Susi Noh Un

Susi is from the community of Sacalaca, Quintana Roo. She grew up harvesting food from their traditional milpa farm: corn, chiles, squash, greens and fruits.

In Susi’s own words, translated by Erin:

My life has always been with the Mayan culture of the pueblo. Making homemade, natural food, because we don’t use things with a lot of preservatives. We prepare everything “al instante,” above all, the tortillas, the daily meal. I learned from my grandparents, from my father. This culture is so worthy of being remembered, and I love the traditions so much. So I will continue to work and share with people who don’t know what it is, la cultura maya. Making food from scratch is beautiful and I remember what my mother said to me, “if you make tamales, make them well.” And I will teach my children the same.

We are honored to have Susi as a collaborator. Her warmth and wit require no translation.

Travelling solo, as a larger group, or on a research mission?
We welcome your requests

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John Doe
Designer

Our Instagram Updates

#fyvmerida

Just a little recipe testing for this Sunday's Cook Along with fyvmexico. I will be making Charred Summer Root Vegetable Tacos (think crunchy radishes and turnips) with a spicy Pepita Crema, Black Beans and Pickled Onions. These are vegan, using char to add a deep flavor, reminiscent of foods cooked in a pit or directly in the hot coals of a fire, a common cooking technique in Yucatan. We will also be making Horchata Casera (that means Homemade- not from a concentrate), the ever present taqueria beverage.
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These Sunday Brunch Cook Alongs are deeply inspired by my adopted home of Merida, Yucatan. I use the local plant foods and the knowledge generously shared with me about cooking methods, family recipes, and obscure ingredients to create dishes influenced by this place and its traditions while reflecting my personal style as a chef. I am humbled by the vast wisdom of the cooks, farmers and produce vendors I have met here, some of whom I am honored to call my friends.
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It is always my goal in my classes to use food as a way to share the Yucatan that I know with others. I am always seeking to learn more and to inspire residents and visitors to support local vendors selling and cooking with the plant foods of this region. With these virtual classes, I hope my commitment to eating and shopping local inspires you to do the same where you live, and your donations from the class are being shared with people in need in my community so you can still make an impact here from afar. I hope you'll join in this Sunday or soon! You can find more info using the link in my bio about the menu and registration for the zoom call. You can also see what I've got lined up for next week. Hasta pronto!
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#cookinglocal #cookalong #cookingclass #cookingwithplants #zoomcooking #zoomtravel #eatlocal #eatmoreplants #eatmostlyplants #plantbasedfoods #plantbasedchef #tacos #plantbasedtacos #vegantacos #veganfoodie #plantbasedfoodie #pepita #maiz #milpa #inspiredbyyucatan #yucatecanfood #yucatecanflavors #localfoods #localgrown #merida #meridayucatan #yucatan #yucatanmexico #fyvmex #fyvmerida
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We made some pretty technicolored Salbutes in our Brunch Cook-Along today! Fried masa+ Espelon Hummus+ Carrot Escabeche+ Pickled Red Beets+ Tomato & Avocado equals a delicious plant-based take on a Yucatecan classic. Bright pink pickled onion and habanero optional.
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You too can join in on these culinary love letters to Yucatan and learn how to take inspiration from its unique food and culture in your own cooking with your own local plant foods. Every Sunday @ 11 Central Time. Registration for each week starts the Tuesday before. Check out what we have lined up by following the Link in my Bio. Pay what you can, 20% of donations go to communities in need in Mexico. Cocina conmigo!
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#cookingclass #cookinglocal #zoomcooking #cookalong #virtualclassroom #virtualtravel #plantbasedfoods #plantfood #plantbasedcooking #plantbasedchef #eatmostlyplants #eatlocalplants #eatmoreplants #travelfoodie #foodietravel #yucatecanfood #yucatecanflavors #learnbydoing #learnbyeating #merida #meridayucatan #meridamexico #yucatan #yucatanmexico #fyvmex #fyvmerida
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Missing travel and connection and learning about food in a place not your own? You CAN have a bit of those things and contribute much-needed support to communities in Yucatan who have been deeply affected by recent flooding, while social distancing protocols persist. Keep reading to find out how!
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This Sunday, June 14 (12 noon Central, 10 Pacific) join me and fyvmexico for a Zoom class making a version of Polcanes, my favorite vegan Yucatecan snack, using ingredients you can find where you live! This was the first recipe my friend Susi Noh Un generously taught me, and one which we were able to share with many others over the last going on 2 years in our Corn to Comal class. I'm honored to be able to share it in a new way, and support my local community doing it
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Comment or send me a DM if you would like to join in and cook along (or just hang out). You will learn, you will eat, you will have fun! I hope to see you! .
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#cookinglocal #cookingclass #cookingwithplants #eatlocal #eatlocalplants #eatmostlyplants #eatmoreplants #plantbasedfoods #plantbasedchef #plantbasedfoodie #yucatecanflavors #yucatecanfood #polcanes #quarantinecooking #virtualclassroom #covid19support #tropicalstormcristobal #merida #meridayucatan #meridamexico #yucatan #yucatanmexico #fyvmex #fyvmerida
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Today was the action-packed 3rd class of our November session of Cooking with Yucatan Plant Foods Everyday. We chopped, sliced, boiled, sauteed, sieved, stuffed, mashed, seasoned, blended and of course, tasted our 5 spotlighted ingredients: Tomate Verde, Plátano Macho, Makal, Zapote Negro and Camote
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The dish pictured above used 3 of our ingredients to make Canoas de Plátano Macho stuffed with Makal Estilo Picadillo, topped with a Raw Tomato Verde Sauce. Baked plátano macho "canoes" can be stuffed and topped with pretty much anything, making this filling dish a quick and easy way to get more fresh and local produce into your diet
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Learn how to make the most of what's fresh and locally available in Yucatan! Next sessions beginning December 3 and January 7. Book online or get more details at www.fyvmexico.com/merida
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#cookingclass #cookinglocal #cookingwithplants #eatmoreplants #eatmostlyplants #plantbasedfoods #plantbasedfoodie #veganfoodie #notjustforvegans #eatinglocal #eatingsimply #platanomacho #plantain #makal #tomateverde #tomatillo #learnbyeating #learnbydoing #getinspired #conciouseating #yucatecanfood #plantsofyucatan #merida #meridayucatan #meridamexico #fyvmex #fyvmerida
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If you have been wondering what I might look like after biting into my first-ever raw habanero, well wonder no more!
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Yesterday, persuaded by the intrepid Cecil Hemingway (pictured), we both sampled a local favorite: Pozol Simple con Habanero y Sal. Pozol is a porridge-like beverage made of nixtamalized corn (hominy) and water, sometimes mixed with sugar and fresh coconut or cacao. Pozol Simple is unsweetened and best enjoyed with a bite of crispy fresh habanero dipped in salt. The Pozol tastes deeply of corn and its creamy texture pairs perfectly with the spice and salt of the chile
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It's not clear from my face in this picture, but after recovering from the first bite, I went back for more and actually loved it! I finally experienced the capsaicin-feuled adrenaline rush and oxytocin burst that chile lovers crave. It was so energizing! Huge shout out to Cecil for helping me overcome my fear of the habanero, because I was seriously missing out! .
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Tasting Pozol is one of my favorite stops on my fyvmexico Plant Food Lovers Market Tour. Spicy or sweet, it's not to be missed. Come join the fun! .
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#habanero #spicy #chile #chilepicante #conqueringfears #adrenaline #oxytocin #culturalenrichment #markets #markettour #comidatradicional #comidadelamilpa #plantbasedfoods #plantbasedtravel #plantbasedtraditions #maiz #nixtamal #pozol #eatinglocal #eatlikealocal #estiloyucateco #eatmoreplants #merida #meridayucatan #yucatan #meridamexico #fyvmerida #fyvmex #visitmerida
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MAMEY - one fruit, endless possibilities. Ever wonder what the heck to do with this leathery-skinned, orange-fleshed tropical fruit? Well, I'll give you 3 ideas, but there are so many more!
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Today we transformed this perfectly sweet mamey zapote into:
1. a creamy licuado with orange juice, oat milk and pepita molida
2. an homage to 1000 island dressing with a crispy slaw
3. a no-bake mamey mousse tart with date and pepita crust .
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Intrigued? The last class in this series (and last until October 2020) has just 2 spots left. We will explore the many culinary possibilities of chayote, chaya, espelón, caimito and pepino kat. 100% plant based, creative home cooking with local ingredients. Follow the link in my bio or contact me to join us next week! .
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#cookinglocal #cookingclass #creativecooking #cookingforhealth #plantbasedfoods #plantbasedchef #plantbasedfoodie #cheflife #plantfoods #eatlocal #supportlocal #plantbased #eatmostlyplants #eatmoreplants #veganfoodie #veganfood #travelfoodie #locavore #yucatecanflavors #yucatecanfood #cookingwithplants #mamey #tropicalfruits #merida #meridayucatan #meridamexico #yucatan #yucatanmexico #fyvmex #fyvmerida
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My plate right before chowing down after a highly enjoyable Zoom Cook Along today. We made Polcanes, a sort of Yucatecan gordita that packs a ton of flavor into a filling with just 3 plant-based ingredients. Served with the bright colors of a simple tomato sauce, a perfectly ripe avocado and a crunchy carrot slaw. The fresh Habanero Salsa was the perfect compliment. .
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I'll be Zooming another Yucatan Inspired recipe every Sunday for a while so stay tuned for details of next week's menu! A minimum of 20% of donations for this class go to support needs in our communities in Mexico. .
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#cookinglocal #cookingclass #cookingwithplants #virtualclassroom #zoomcooking #quarantineprojects #eatmostlyplants #eatlocalplants #eatmoreplants #plantbasedfoods #plantbasedchef #plantbasedfoodie #polcanes #yucatecanflavors #yucatecanflavors #learnbydoing #learnbyeating ##merida #meridayucatan #meridamexico #yucatan #yucatanmexico #fyvmex #fyvmerida
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The salad I made while chatting with fyvmexico this morning on Instagram live. Ataulfo mango, cucumber, shaved carrot and cilantro, dressed with a garlicky ciruela-lime vinaigrette
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Watch my feed for upcoming live chats about cooking with local plants in Yucatan, or being inspired wherever you are to cook with what is fresh and available. Hasta pronto! .
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#cookinglocal #chattingaboutplants #plantbasedfoods #plantbasedchef #cookingwithplants #yucatecanflavors #yucatecanfood #quarantinecooking #adapting #newnormal #eatmostlyplants #eatmoreplants #eatlocalplants #mango #cucumber #carrots #cilantro #ciruela #salad #stayhome #staysafe #quédateencasa #merida #meridayucatan #meridamexico #yucatan #yucatanmexico #fyvmex #fyvmerida
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Green Gazpacho
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Tomate verde, chile dulce y chile Serrano, pepino blanco, cilantro, pepita, plátano macho, lime
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Garnished with avocado, radish, cilantro and...can anyone guess what is in the center?
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Ok ok, I'll tell you! It's the fried peel of the plantain I blended into the soup. Feels so good to waste less (and it tastes good too)! .
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Our Cooking with Yucatan Plant Foods class this coming Tuesday highlights Tomate Verde (also known as tomatillo), Makal, Plátano Macho, Camote, and Zapote Negro. Exciting stuff! .
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#cookingclass #cookinglocal #cookingwithplants #creativecooking #learnbydoing #learnbyeating #plantbasedfoods #plantbased #veganfoodie #plantbasedfoodie #yucatecanfood #tomateverde #tomatillo #gazpacho #platanomacho #nowaste #eatmostlyplants #eatmoreplants #notjustforvegans #merida #meridayucatan #meridamexico #fyvmex #fyvmerida
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