1 ½ cup Morelos-style rice
4 saladet tomatoes, roasted and seeded
½ onion, coarsely sliced, roasted

cloves garlic, roasted and peeled; set aside two cloves
1 jalapeño pepper, roasted, opened, seeded

cup olive oil (or ½ cup corn oil and ¼ cup olive oil)
6 cups lightly salted fish broth
3 tender epazote sprigs

tablespoons parsley (leaves only), finely chopped
¼ cup epazote (leaves only), finely chopped

large shrimp with heads, opened lengthwise in half, deveined

crawfish, opened lengthwise in half, deveined
3 medium crabs, cleaned, halved
24 clams, cleaned, previously steamed open
350 g (3/4 lb) cooked octopus, thickly sliced
300 g (2/3 lb)

sea bass loin, cut into thick strips, lightly fried in 2 tablespoons olive oil
100 g (1/4 lb)

mullet roe, fried in 1 tablespoon oil with two peeled, finely chopped garlic cloves, 1 tablespoon parsley dissolved in a bit of of the broth
salt to taste


Clean the rice and soak in hot water for 15 minutes. Drain through a colander, rinsing with cold water until liquid runs clear; let drain again.
Grind the tomatoes (with skin still on), onion, garlic and one half pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a deep pan over medium heat, add tomatoes and sauté lightly. Set aside.
Heat 8 tablespoons oil in a heavy saucepan over medium heat; add the rice and fry until brown. Drain the oil and add the sautéed tomatoes. Incorporate 2 ½ cups of hot broth, epazote sprigs and a pinch of salt, cover and reduce heat. Stop cooking when rice is nearly finished, al dente; remove epazote.
While still cooking add 1 ½ cups of hot broth with chopped epazote; bring to a boil. Add shrimp, crawfish, crabs, octopus, and roe. Bring to a boil once more, cover and cook approximately 3 minutes. Turn off heat and let stand for 5 more minutes.
Before serving, garnish with the remaining parsley and minced pepper. Adjust seasoning.
Serve immediately, from the pan.

* This rice dish can be prepared with any kind of fish or shellfish, as long as the soupy consistency and intense epazote flavor are maintained.


Arroz a la tumbada is a splendid stew from the town of Alvarado, in Veracruz. Locals recount it was created by a fisherman who ingeniously devised a way to create a hot meal at sea. Over time this simple subsistence recipe has become a signature dish of coastal Veracruz.


Fresh shrimp
Jalapeño chile
Tomato saladet