We've become regular customers of the Micro Mercantes booth at the Hollywood Farmers Market where they serve the most wonderful homemade tamales for only $2.50 for a chicken, pork or vegetable version. Choose one and watch the vendor dig into the pot and unwrap the soft masa tamale from the steaming corn husk. Then she'll ask if you'd like crema and salsa, to which you reply, "Yes, please!" And you can eat it right there and fortify yourself for the heavy lifting required as you stroll through the market.
The best part, though, is that this little stall is a project of the Hacienda CDC, who have overseen the development of affordable housing for predominantly Latino residents in northeast Portland, the start up of a community-based credit union, the development of a healthcare clinic and three other community centers where culturally-appropriate instruction and social services are provided. The Micro Mercantes is a pilot project of the Hacienda CDC and is providing six vendors an opportunity to access local farmers markets to sell their goods and services, including prepared food, arts and crafts. The vendors are also helped with training and mentoring in business skills so that their efforts can become self-sustaining.
So check them out when you can, and help this worthwhile cause while enjoying a terrific breakfast!