Leeds has an all new gluten-free and vegan friendly pop up that has taken up residency in the our beloved Chida! From an at home experiment to a nation wide adventure - El Marchador have worked all over the UK at festivals, street food events and pop up kitchens but now they have joined the Chida team to offer great menu alongside the best Agave selection in Leeds.
(Ben Walker - El Marchador's Founder)
El Marchador is the result of ideas that I have been chasing around for many years. I’ve always been obsessed with food (my waistline attests to that) but my passion for Mexican food was ignited on a trip to the US when I stood and watched a chap churning out tortillas from fresh masa dough. After many questions he made a fresh tortilla, put a few drops of lime on it & a sprinkle of salt and gave it to me – this first taste of such a fresh tortilla was mind blowing. Ever since then I’ve experimented at home on my family & when I finally decided to take the plunge to start my own business I knew that there was only one thing that could be the focus: fresh corn tortillas.
My overriding passion for food coupled with a wider understanding of our global food systems and it’s inherent issues led me to change my diet to entirely plant based – given this I chose to take the same path with my business, my aim was not to make a vegan business, but rather a business that made great food that happens to be plant based.
Over the past year we have worked at festivals & events all over the country, popular street food haunts & kitchen takeovers. Now the opportunity to offer a greater menu alongside what I believe is one of the country’s most enviable selections of tequila & mescal at Chida Cantina is one that I am very excited about and see our partnership with the group as the start of a thrilling time for the business.
Chida Cantina are very excited about this partnership over the next few months, who know's where it will take us both.. To see the full menu click here.
One of our most popular dishes by a long way are the Baja Tofish Tacos. Deceptively simple but wickedly moreish it was once described to me as ‘a one dish argument for exciting vegan food’ – truly one of the greatest compliments I could ever hope to receive.
I set out to replicate the flavours & textures of the classic beachside dish from the Baja California region of Mexico where freshly caught fish are grilled or fried and served simply on tortillas with some crunchy salad & pickles.
We take some extra firm tofu & wrap it in seaweed before coating it in a seasoned cornmeal batter then fry it crisp. This is nestled on finely shredded cabbage, topped with hibiscus & lime pickled onions then drizzled with a jalapeño & coriander mayo.
Make sure you give El Marchador & Chida Cantina a follow to watch our journey together!