All cuisines have their little secrets (some not that little) and list of curiosities. Our Mexican Food Facts list is full of colourful and delicious details that can provide amusement to foreigners, but for us, is just a walk in the park.
- Goodness to the world! Right now, it’s so easy to find a wide range of ingredients close to us. The times we live in gives us access to products that weren’t so easily available a few years back. It is hard to think that there was a time when there was no tomatoes in Italy and no potatoes in Europe. Here are some products that first appeared in Mexico or were first domesticated there that are now part of the beautiful world food: Chocolate, vanilla, tomatoes, corn, chilli, chia seeds, pitaya or dragon fruit and avocado to name just a few. You are welcome ????
- Our Sweets Are Hot. We grow up adding hot sauces to our crisps, chilli flakes to our fruit and covering our food with as many hot salsas as possible. Every household will have a wide selection of hot condiments to add to food. Our candies consist of spicy lollies, hot gummies, fruit based candies covered in chilli flakes and on top of that we often add Valentina, just in case it isn’t hot enough. There is no shame in keeping a bottle of hot sauce or chilli flakes on one’s bag or office desk for those desperate times when we need a little kick to keep going. We’ve all been there.
- Lemons are an essential part of any meal, snack and sometimes the only one of the 5 a day that we have. Yellow or green, they are all lemons to us, we don’t differentiate. We hate the fake lemon that comes in squeeze bottles as much as fake lemonade where no real lemons have been squeezed. We add lemons to anything and we often ask for more if there’s not enough lemons available at the table. Lemons are present on our drinks, meals and snacks. There have been cases of lemons found inside ladies bags just in case a high dose of Vitamin C is needed. I’ve done it.
- Pan Dulce or Sweet Bread is one of the things we miss most from home. There’s no croissant, donut or biscuits that will ever replace a concha or a polvoron. Sweet bread appeared once Spain introduced wheat flour and was also heavily influenced by the French. We have a very big selection of baked goods. It is the perfect companion of an afternoon coffee or a merienda, a coffee break in the middle of the morning just as elevenses. Nobody can ever forget the delicious smell coming from the bakeries early in the morning. Nobody.
- Canned Tortillas. There were canned tortillas around more recently that we would like to admit. These were available in the US and made by El Paso. This is a fact that we would like to forget but we can’t. A tortilla should never be trapped in a can. A tortilla should always be able to be free in a flexible environment. Always.
Image credits: Avocado – aloalo on Flickr/ Calaveras – Razi Marysol Machay on Flickr/ Cazuela – esperales on Flickr/ Ceviche – regan76 on Flickr/ Chia! – Jennuine Captures Photo on Flickr/ Cut Vanilla Pod – Juli on Flickr/ Dried Cocoa – Nestle on Flickr/ Mexican Sweets – Ari Helminen on Flickr/ Old El Paso Tortillas – Allen on Flickr/ Pan Dulce – John Watson on Flickr/ Panaderia La Condesa DF MX – Alejandro De La Cruz on Flickr/ Pitaya-Dragon Fruit – Michael Canavan on Flickr/ Polvoron de Fresa – .jubilo.haku. on Flickr/ Summer Tomatoes – Khush N on Flickr/ Tacos El Gordo – Russell Mondy on Flickr/ Tostilocos – Turista Libre on Flickr/ Vicios – Carolina Lopez on Flickr