Valladolid, just east of the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza, is the culinary capital of Mexico’s Yucatán state. And in its Mercado Municipal, the acknowledged master butcher is Humberto Chávez González, who works with his son, Abraham. Don Berto, as locals know the father, is in his 70s, wears a crisp white shirt and big black glasses, greets passersby by name, and cuts meat with astonishing deftness. His longaniza de Valladolid, a rich sausage made in this town and beloved across the Yucatán peninsula, is considered some of the best in the city. He and Abraham make it daily in a smokehouse in their backyard and sell it at their white-tiled stall. The secret is their quality meat and the intense recado, spice paste, that Don Berto makes himself. If you arrive late in the day, the longaniza will be sold out – but Don Berto and Abraham will still greet you with a smile.
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