El Pueblo’s Diablito Beats the Heat With a Little Fire Against Fire

The Diablito at El Pueblo

The Diablito at El PuebloPhoto: Collin Keefe

With temps hovering in the nineties and a proven history of drawing large mobs of food-focused folks, there’s a good chance that tonight’s Italian Market edition of the Food Trust’s ever-popular Night Market could devolve into a crowded, hot and sweaty scene. Should you find yourself seeking relief, we recommend venturing south on 9th Street just past Elsworth to El Pueblo (1149 South Ninth Street), and slip into one of its Diablitos, a well-flavored and piquant tamarind-spiked concoction that’s made with shaved ice, tamarind seeds, fresh-squeezed juices and spices. The ice cools, and the fiery spiciness provides a little fight-fire-with-fire defense against the heat. “It’s a specialty of the Puebla and Mexico City area,” El Pueblo owner Cristobal Romero told Grub Street. “It’s not very sweet, it’s a little acidic and sour because of the tamarind, but it’s refreshing in the summer heat.”

And it’s just one of the many icy treats on offer at the tiny shop. In addition to Diablitos, El Pueblo has a myriad of frozen and frosty popsicles (paletas), Mexican-style water ices (nieve), ice cream (helado) and Agua de Frutas, a selection of cool beverages made with finely chopped fruit and either water, juice or milk.

All of the popsicles, ices and ice creams are sourced locally from Kennet Square’s La Michoacana Homemade Ice Cream, and come in variety unusual flavors, like chiclet (gum flavored ice cream), tamarindo con chile (a spicy tamarind popsicle), and helado elote, a slightly spicy and savory ice cream made with corn imported from Mexico.

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