Get Some Fresh Air and Visit Azteca Farmers Market For Produce, Ceviche, Tacos And More
Azteca Farmers Market at 7710 East Freeway is well on its way to being another great Houston open-air shopping venue. Since December, the vendors have stocked their stalls with colorful fare: fruit stacked in pyramids, jars of spices marked with bright signs and flower-shaped mangos-on-a-stick. A variety of garden and lawn ornaments — metal peacocks with whirly-gig feathers and frogs holding planters in their laps — beckon from the rear entrance. Once you enter, shoppers will not only find fresh produce but also vendors selling imported home goods, such as veggie-shaped refrigerator magnets from Peru and shot glasses from Mexico. Luckily for Houstonians, Azteca Farmers Market is still relatively unknown and doesn’t get as crowded as others. Plus, new vendors are being added all the time.
The market is held inside the former event venue, Emiliano’s, which has been transformed into a relaxing space to shop, with both indoor and outdoor spaces. Outside the market are some of the best taco trucks in the area. These include Pollos Asados del Rodeo, which serves pollos enteras — whole roasted chickens with green sauce, onions and beans — and Taqueria Luna, which crafts gorditas de fajita and tortillas by hand.
Inside, you will find a ceviche bar, Mariscos Popeye. Look for the signs that say only “Michelada” and “Ceviche”, with arrows that direct customers to the bar. Once there, a tostada ceviche mixto paired with a michelada makes a perfect $10 deal. To make the michelada, the bartender squeezes fresh lime juice into a thick Styrofoam cup rimmed with spicy-salty Tajín seasoning and garnished with large shrimp. The tostada is a generous helping of mixed seafood served over a thin layer of mayonnaise and garnished with slices of fresh avocado. Also available is ceviche botano (ceviche to go), available with fish, shrimp, octopus or all three. Bottles of hot sauce in black, orange and green line the bar, offering pops of color and a range of flavors and heat to enhance your meal.
The people at Aztecas are friendly and the prices are more than fair. The extra elbow room, especially now, is appreciated, too. Aztecas is open daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.