Pambazos, an iconic Mexican street food

Pambazos are stuffed with beans, chorizo, lettuce, cream, and cheese

Pambazos, an iconic Mexican street food
“Pan basso” means low bread and is made with lower quality flour - Photo: Sandra Torres/EL UNIVERSAL
English 03/09/2019 15:34 EL UNIVERSAL in English/Miranda Perea Mexico City Actualizada 00:51
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Pambazos are a traditional Mexican dish that goes back to colonial times. The bread made with lower quality flour that could not be sent to viceroys or high officers was called “pan basso” which means low bread. Thus, it evolved to what we know now as pambazos, a favorite meal of all Mexicans.

The bread with which pambazos are made depends on the region. In the Spanish recipe, one of the oldest, the bread is usually shaped like an oval; it is fluffy, it has crevices and has a soft brown color. In the traditional recipe from central Mexico, the bread can also be fluffy but it has a crescent shape and is sprinkled with flour.

Another very similar recipe is made in the south of the country. In Xalapa, they make soft and crunchy or toasted pambazos; the latter are approximately 5 centimeters in diameter and are usually eaten with coffee. The soft ones measure from 5 to 8 centimeters. The dough is made with flour, yeast, salt, sugar, lard, and milk.

The traditional Mexican street food, known as “antojitos,” is similar to a torta (a Mexican sandwich of sorts), and is made with the bread by the same name. The stuffing varies according to the region where it is prepared.

In Mexico City, pambazos are sold in the street; the bread is spread with a red chili salsa. The most popular stuffing is beans, potatoes with chorizo (a Mexican spicy sausage), and shredded lettuce. It is heated in a comal (a Mexican skillet) with lard and it is topped with cream and shredded cheese.

In Veracruz, pambazos usually contain beans, mayonnaise, ham, shredded chicken, chorizo, lettuce, and smokey chipotle. They are very popular in children's celebrations, reunions, or evening parties.

In Durango, pambazos made with black seed bread are famous and are usually stuffed with pork meat or chorizo. In Querétaro, they are known as “guajolotes.”


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