Sake
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I woke up thinking about breakfast. During my time in Italy ten years ago, I picked up the habit of not eating in the mornings at all--Italians tend to just have a cappuccino and cornetto (a little croissant-like pastry) for breakfast, opting to save space for a humongous lunch instead.

But I'm trying to fine-tune my routine here in Oakland now, and have started incorporating breakfast into my day. It must seem like such a given to you I'm sure, this notion of breakfast, but it's hard to try to train yourself into eating first thing in the morning when you haven't done so for a decade. I bought a quart of milk for the first time in forever this week, along with a box of cereal and bananas. We'll start there. Baby steps.

It makes me sad though, because breakfast is actually one of my favorite meal of the day. I'm a morning person by nature, so I've gotta eat first thing, right? In my visit to Oaxaca last year, we made a point of eating a proper desayuno (breakfast) every day. We visited La Fonda Florecita, inside the Mercado de la Merced not once, but TWICE during my stay.

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La Fonda is housed inside the market--a large cement building, with high ceilings and light peaking from above. Vendors wrap all around the windy building and outside too.

The menu for La Fonda spans across an entire wall. You know, so no one misses it.

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Folks gather on large communal tables right outside the kitchen of La Fonda, which is basically just a little stand. Gentlemen in cowboy hats walk around with their guitars and serenade you throughout breakfast. It is such a joyous way to wake up!

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Salsa de queso (Oaxacan cheese with black beans in a tomato broth):

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Quesadilla de chorizo y flor de calabazas (chorizo + zucchini flower quesadilla):

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Memelitas (Corn tortillas slathered with black beans and queso crumbles):

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Chile rellenos, with chicken. This was absolutely delicious.

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Chocolate de agua (Oaxacan hot chocolate with water--get the milk version instead!)

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Pinapple juice. Fresh and cold.

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The damage.

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Here are some shots of the rest of the market:

Quesos Lupita, an Oaxacan cheese shop.

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Lady wrapping the gargantuan pieces of wide stringy cheese into a ball.

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Chiles.

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Fresh eggs in a bag, and grains.

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POLLO!

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Butcher, overseen by Santa Maria de Guadalupe.

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Fresh citrus.

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Of course, I could not resist.

Oh, Oaxaca. The colors! The flavors! The energy! Such lust for life wouldn't exist without a proper breakfast, right?

Sigh. I miss Oaxaca.

*La Merced Market is located on Insurgentes between Morelos and Murguía. It is also known as Mercado Democracia. (via Planeta dot com)
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