Saturday, December 3, 2011
A friend of mine who lived in Mexico City said to me, "Bob, without those limes, the whole country of Mexico would come screeching to a halt." I think she's probably right. A burrito just isn't right without a lime.
I grew up thinking limes were just unripe lemons. That's not true, but supermarket limes look like unripe lemons. Here in San Diego, one of your neighbors is bound to have a lemon tree, and until they're ripe, those things look like limes.
Not so, the Mexican lime. Round as a pinball, and about the same size, maybe a little further across than a quarter. (The size of a Sacagawea dollar, then? Why doesn't anybody use those? But that's a separate rant.) These little limes have a very thin skin, lots of seeds, and are very, very, well, limey. Have one squeezed on your taco, chilango-style: two corn tortillas, lots of meat, some onion, salsa, cilantro, and that lime juice to offset the chiles. The juice of one is about right for shaking up a cosmopolitan - the juice of two for a margarita. I still buy supermarket limes, but these are the limes I get excited about, the ones the Mexican market has in a huge bin.
I'm told they're the same as Key Limes, by the way.