Campechana Tostada: Mixed Sea Critters from Mariscos Sinaloa

Tacos may very well be the perfect food, but let's face it, the standard Meximerican fare can get a bit stale after a while. Taco the Town is here to highlight some of the more unusual Mexican finds in the valley.

This week: Campechana Tostada from Mariscos Sinaloa

¿Como se dice?: Marisocos Sinaloa specializes in seafood, and this is one joint in the Valley that's anything but fishy. If you're still a skeptic, the campechana tostada is all it will take to break your "no seafood in the desert" policy. Tons of sea critters are piled high on a crispy corn tortilla, tossed in a light and zesty brine with some good old fashioned salsa bandera. Plus, where else are you going to find sea snails on the menu? Delicious, delicious sea snails.

La Comida y El Sabor: The campechana tostada is a good bet if you're looking for a fishy nibbler that's as much of a seafood sampler platter as it is a crisp tostada. A crunchy corn tortilla is topped with some seriously good sea food. Plus, if the raw state of ceviche weirds you out, you need not fear. All the sea creatures are fully cooked. Bright purple octopus is boiled until tender, and mixed with tender chunks of sea snail. Boiled shrimp are added to the mix and the whole seafood buffet is topped with a pile of shredded crab. Top that with a big pile of salsa bandera and you have a lightly spiced tostada that allows the seafood flavor to shine.

The only sauce that accompanies the sea critters is the zesty cilantro-lime flavor imparted by the salsa crudo, and the seafood is largely undressed. This allows you to customize the flavor of the tostada to your liking. Add a squirt of lime juice, a pinch of salt, and a couple liberal dashes of one of their six different types of hot sauce. There's also a couple custom cocktail sauces at your table too, from tomato-based to creamy, so mix and match until you find the perfect combination.

Bring a bit of México to your kitchen: Find some seafood and turn your own kitchen into a mariscos restaurant. Track down all the different types of seafood and try your hand at making campechanas de mariscos. (The recipe is in Spanish, but pop it into Google Translate to crack the secret to really mariscos!)

Know of any Mexican gems in the valley? Reveal your family secrets in the comment section.

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