Mexico Dispatch, Mexico City: Bug cuisine By Gay Nagle Myers / May 21, 2014 Share 1 -- Mexico editor Gay Nagle Myers had three days to explore sprawling Mexico City. It was her first visit, her itinerary was jam-packed and her walking shoes got a workout. Here is her second dispatch. Click to read Gay’s first dispatch.Chef Maycoll Calderon picked up the ball of dough, tossed it into the air a couple of times, folded it over his fists and used his knuckles to stretch and shape it into a thin circle.“Don’t use your fingers to do this. Your nails will cut the dough and make holes in it,” he said.He then slapped the perfect circle of thin dough onto a big paddle-like device and stuck it in the oven.I was in the midst of a cooking class, trying my hand at making an avocado pizza under the tutelage of Calderon, executive chef and director at the J&G Grill at the St. Regis Mexico City.That morning, we’d already been to the Mercado de San Juan, a visually stunning market piled high with colorful displays of cheeses, vegetables and fruits. Music from strolling accordion players filled the air.I bypassed the meat aisles, having caught a view of the skinning process of animals I sometimes eat. Calderon stopped in front of a stall filled with bins filled with what looked like candy. He dropped a couple of dark little tidbits in my hand. “Try these. They’re good.”I chewed and swallowed. Sort of crunchy and spicy.“You like? I use them a lot in my recipes. They’re chicatana ants,” he said. I’m glad I didn’t know that beforehand. I declined his next offering because I recognized the fried grasshopper for what it was. What I liked much better was mamey, a fruit that tasted like a mix of pineapple and mango.The avocado pizza, which I did master and did eat, and the market visit were part of a three-day food blitz in Mexico’s capital city.Street food was everywhere. Burners, griddles and bubbling pots were set up on street corners, in parks, under tarps and in the Zocalo — Mexico City’s enormous square, said to be the largest in the world.Calderon pointed out a small hole-in-the-wall serving tortas, which are delicious sandwiches served on big, crusty rolls stuffed with steak, chicken, ham, pinto beans, avocados and vegetables.“If you can finish a torta in there in 15 minutes, it’s free,” he said.I didn’t try. The ants filled me up.I couldn’t seem to escape the insects. That night in the residential Polanco neighborhood, I dined at Pujol, a 44-seat restaurant rated as the top restaurant in Mexico. One of the many appetizers in the eight-course dinner was charred baby corn cobs spread with coffee-flavored mayonnaise and rolled in powdered chicatana ants.For the third course, the waiter set down a small piece of roasted leek topped with escamoles. It looked like a spoonful of mushy pine nuts, but actually was ant larvae. One afternoon at the St. Regis, I had a ginger margarita in a frosted glass rimmed with worm salt.Insects have more protein than meat, I was told. If that’s true, I was a señora on protein overload by the time I left.My final taste treat also was a surprise. On the last night, I found a little black bag on my bedside table when I returned to my room at the St. Regis.Thinking it was another wonderful nighttime treat left by my butler, I untied the cloth bag and popped the two orange goodies into my mouth.It registered pretty fast. What I was chewing on were rubber ear plugs, left for hotel guests on Saturday nights to drown out the revelry on the Paseo de la Reforma, transformed into a pedestrian-only area on Sunday mornings outside the hotel.It was probably time to leave.___Follow Gay Nagle Myers on Twitter @gnmtravelweekly.