Tough Little Pumpkin Jam

I had chilacayote jam on toast for my first breakfast this morning. (Yes, I had two breakfasts.) Chilacayote is a tough little pumpkin that is cooked in syrup in Latin America. It has an odd crunchy texture that makes an audible sound when you bite it -- the fibrous flesh absorbs lots of the syrup.

Years ago, Guatemalans nicknamed President Juan José Arévalo "the chilacayote" when he survived a car wreck in which his automobile went over a cliff and disintegrated. The President survived unhurt. Which is why they called him "a tough little pumpkin."

Like the Mexican marmalade I've written about before, the chilacayote I had was made by Conservas Valdez in Nuevo Leon, Mexico. For information about these Mexican conserves, write to: Juan C. Valdez, Conservas Valdez, Terracota #112, El Barro, Santiago, Nuevo Leon, Mexico or call 81-8266-0591.

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