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Regional Mexican Food

3 October 2009 3,046 views No Comment

Mexico is a pretty big country, like the United States, and it offers many different kinds of foods. Each area of the country has a different style of food and its own regional specialties. There are dishes which are very popular in some areas of Mexico but relatively unfamiliar in other areas of the country.

In fact, some of the dishes, which people in the US think of as Mexican, are largely unknown in Mexico itself! For example, let us take chimichangas and nachos. Chimichangas were actually invented in the southwestern United States; and nachos which did originate in Mexico but are found more plentifully in other countries than in Mexico itself. The things, which you think you know about Mexican food, may not be representative of the reality of this cuisine, as it exists in the country.

The coastal regions of Mexico have their own regional Mexican recipes, which as you would expect, feature fish and other seafood. Veracruz in particular is known for its fish dishes, especially those which are “Veracruzana” (in the Veracruz style), especially those served with a spicy tomato sauce containing olives and capers – – having a clear influence from Spain.

The state of Oaxaca is known for mole. These often-spicy sauces are made from a variety of ingredients including chocolate, chilies, pumpkin seeds, and others. They have a fusion of different flavors and vegetable, meat and cheese mole dishes are all quite common.

There is a lot of obvious Spanish influence on the local dishes served in the north of Mexico and beef dishes especially are more common here than in the rest of Mexico. This is primarily because of the Spanish colony positioning on either side of the Rio Grande and the colonists’ demand for beef. This is the part of the country where you will find the famous carne asada, which is also a very popular dish in Texas and the American southwest.

In Central Mexico, you will find dishes and culinary influences from neighboring regions of the country, but Central Mexico is also the home of some distinctive Mexican recipes, which are the region’s own. These include the spicy goat soup birria, the hominy and pork soup pozole and the tripe soup known as menudo. It is the region’s soups and stews, which are the most famous of its dishes, but central Mexico is also the home of carnitas, a fried pork dish that is often served on tacos and tortas.

There are also Mexican recipes, which are popular, nationwide, such as chiles en nogada, a stuffed poblano dish topped with a walnut cream sauce and pomegranate seeds (the three colors of the ingredients suggest the colors of the Mexican flag). Tacos are another Mexican food, which you will find all over the country, though there is a great regional variation in terms of which ingredients are used to prepare them.

Mexico contains a great many different climates and different indigenous cultures, all with a greater or lesser degree of influence from Spanish cuisine, as well as from other groups of immigrants, all of whom have brought their own culinary influences. Mexican cuisine offers a lot to explore, going well beyond the familiar tacos and burritos; try a few regional Mexican recipes for something different and exciting at your table.

Copyright (c) 2009 Christine Szalay Kudra

As the mom of four boys great food is a way of life and lots of it. So, what do you get if you combine the freshest produce with the best fish, meat or poultry and a clever combination of herbs and spices? Answer: Mexican food and if you have never tasted authentic Mexican recipes you have not lived! Traditional Mexican food is both healthy and easy to make, even for beginners!

For more info and recipes visit: http://www.MexicanFoodRecipes.org

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