Crazy Facts About Mexican Foods, photo by Jeswin Thomas on Pexels
Mexico is considered one of the richest gastronomies in the world. Its culinary tapestry is woven with a vibrant array of flavours, textures, and traditions that have captured the hearts and taste buds of food enthusiasts around the globe. If you're a fan of Mexican cuisine, did you know that there are many crazy facts about Mexican foods? Let's find out below!
Mexican Cuisine, photo by RDNE Stock Project on Pexels
In a world where culinary traditions often cross borders and blend with other influences, Mexican cuisine stands as a testament to its unparalleled authenticity and cultural significance. So much so that in 2010, it was recognized as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO, cementing its place not just on plates but in the annals of global heritage.
But what exactly does it mean for cuisine to be designated as a World Heritage? It signifies that Mexican cuisine isn't just a collection of recipes; it's a living, evolving cultural expression that contributes to the sense of identity and belonging for the Mexican people and, by extension, to the world. This recognition brings with it a responsibility to preserve and promote the traditional practices that have shaped Mexican gastronomy.
Healthy Mexican Cuisine, photo by Chitokan C. on Pexels
One of the cornerstones of Mexican cuisine's healthfulness lies in its emphasis on fresh ingredients. From the rainbow-hued assortment of vegetables that grace the table to the lean proteins like grilled chicken and seafood, every dish bursts with natural flavours that are both satisfying and nutritious. Take, for instance, the ubiquitous guacamole – a creamy, avocado-based dip that's not only a party favourite but also an excellent source of heart-healthy fats and essential nutrients.
Carbohydrates that come from corn tortillas
But perhaps the most noteworthy star of Mexican cuisine's health-conscious reputation is the humble corn tortilla. Made from whole corn, this staple is a complex carbohydrate that's rich in fiber, aiding digestion and promoting a sense of fullness. Unlike its processed flour counterpart, the corn tortilla offers sustained energy release, helping to keep those blood sugar spikes in check.
Eat your greens: Mexican herbs and spices
Let's not forget about the robust use of herbs and spices that define Mexican dishes. Ingredients like cilantro, oregano, and chiles aren't just there to elevate flavours; they also bring along a host of health benefits. Chiles, for instance, contain capsaicin, a compound known for its metabolism-boosting and pain-relieving properties. And did you know that cilantro is packed with antioxidants and can aid in detoxifying the body? It's a prime example of how each pinch of seasoning contributes more than just taste.
Caesar Salad, photo by Alejandro Aznar on Pexels
Another crazy facts about Mexican foods involves a beloved dish that many associate with Italy: the Caesar salad. However, contrary to its Mediterranean-sounding name, this iconic salad actually has its origins in the heart of Mexico.
The Caesar salad's creation is attributed to Caesar Cardini, an Italian immigrant who operated a restaurant in Tijuana, Mexico, during the 1920s. Cardini's restaurant was a popular destination for Americans seeking to bypass the restrictions of Prohibition in the United States. The tale of the salad's invention unfolds in 1924 during a particularly busy Fourth of July weekend.
So, why it’s called ‘Caesar’?
The salad's name, "Caesar," stems from its creator's first name, and its association with Italy is likely due to the use of ingredients commonly found in Mediterranean cuisine, such as olive oil and Parmesan cheese. Over the years, the Caesar salad underwent various adaptations, leading to the inclusion of ingredients like grilled chicken or shrimp, further enhancing its appeal and versatility.
Mexican Foods, photo by Vinicius Caricatte on Pexels
From the northern deserts to the lush southern jungles, every corner of Mexico has contributed to the country's gastronomic mosaic excellence.
In northern Mexico, where the climate is arid, and ranching is a way of life, you'll find dishes centered around beef and cheese. Hearty carne asada (grilled steak) tacos, flour tortillas, and dishes like machaca (dried meat) are staples in this region. The proximity to the United States has also led to a fusion of Tex-Mex flavours, giving rise to dishes like the burrito and the chimichanga.
As you move toward the central regions, particularly Mexico City, you'll encounter the heart of Mexican culinary tradition. Here, the street food culture flourishes, offering an array of tacos, tamales, and tortas. The influence of pre-Hispanic ingredients is evident in dishes like huitlacoche (corn fungus) and nopal (cactus) salads.
Venture into the coastal areas, and you'll be treated to the sea's bounty. Ceviche, aguachile (spicy shrimp or seafood dish), and Pescado a la talla (grilled fish) take center stage, with the flavours of lime, chiles, and fresh seafood dancing on your palate.
In the southern states of Oaxaca and Chiapas, ancient traditions collide with bold flavors. Complex moles, made from an intricate blend of spices, chocolate, and chiles, are a testament to the artistry of Mexican cooking. Tlayudas, often referred to as Mexican pizzas, showcase regional Oaxacan cheeses and a variety of toppings.
Mexican Tortillas, photo by alleksana on Pexels
Did you know that most Mexican families will eat around two pounds of tortillas in a day? This point highlights the significant cultural and culinary role that tortillas play in the daily diet of many Mexican households. Tortillas are a staple food in Mexican cuisine and have a long history dating back to the indigenous civilizations of Mesoamerica, such as the Aztecs and Maya.
Pregnant Women are Advised to Eat Tortillas.
Tortillas are wonderful and nutritious foods. In fact, pregnant women in Mexico are advised to eat at least two to three servings of tortillas a day because they contain lots of iron, vitamins, calcium and many other nutrients. Additionally, tortillas are also free of cholesterol!
Tortillas also smell and taste wonderful. The smell of freshly made tortillas is so enticing that Tortilla mills or shops usually have a salt shaker on their counter, so you can grab a fresh tortilla straight from the packaging, sprinkle some salt and eat it on your way home.
Taco Day, photo by Polina Tankilevitch on Pexels
Did you know that the United States is one of the countries that celebrates National Taco Day? In 2009, the popular American taco restaurant chain Del Taco did a press release that proclaimed October 4th National Taco Day. During the national Taco Day celebration, most taco restaurants will celebrate the Tacotober Fest with new specials daily.
How to celebrate National Taco Day?
Well, there are various ways for you to celebrate National Taco Day. If you live in Bali, you can visit Rosalita’s Cantina Bali, which is situated in Seminyak Square. Rosalita’s Cantina Bali is a fun-filled restaurant and bar that combines traditional cuisine of Mexican food with the best of Texas Steakhouse.
When you’re searching for the best place to celebrate Taco Day in Bali, Rosalita’s Cantina is unquestionably the best place for you to go!
Chocolate and Choco Drinks, photo by Isaiah Quindo on Pexels
The origin of chocolate can be traced back to ancient Mesoamerica, specifically to the civilizations of the Maya and Aztec peoples in what is now present-day Mexico. Chocolate's journey from a bitter beverage used in rituals to the sweet treat we know today is a fascinating story reflecting this beloved ingredient's cultural, culinary, and historical significance.
So here’s a detailed explanation of chocolate that originated from Mexico.
The indigenous peoples of Mesoamerica, including the Maya and Aztecs, were among the first to cultivate and use cacao, the plant from which chocolate is derived. Cacao beans were highly valued and had various uses, primarily in the form of a bitter beverage consumed during ceremonies and important occasions.
The ancient Maya and Aztecs prepared a beverage called "chocolatl" or "xocolātl," which was made by grinding roasted cacao beans and mixing the paste with water, spices, and sometimes chilli peppers. This frothy, unsweetened drink had cultural and ceremonial significance, often associated with rituals, religious offerings, and social gatherings.
Cacao held a special place in the spiritual and social lives of these civilizations. It was believed to have divine properties and was associated with gods and deities. Cacao beans were even used as currency in some societies, showcasing their value and importance.
The Spanish conquistadors, led by Hernán Cortés, encountered cacao and the chocolate beverage during their interactions with the Aztecs in the early 16th century. The explorers were introduced to the drink, and its bitter taste was quite different from what they were accustomed to in Europe.