Bright and bold, and robust with flavour, Mexican food is a brilliant blend of native American-Indian and Spanish colonial cooking. And it's back on our tables.
Doing the salsa
Tomato salsa is the ketchup of the Mexican kitchen. It is always freshly made as close to serving time as possible. To make guacamole, simply add 1 or 2 roughly mashed avocados to the basic tomato salsa. Add fresh lime juice and salt to taste.
TIP: we have a host of different salsa recipes right here - simply type salsa in the search box.
Famous foods of the Mexican kitchen
The bread of Mexico. Traditionally made with dried corn kernels and slaked with lime (calcium oxide). The Spanish, however, disliked the taste of lime, and their cooks began to make tortillas using wheat flour.
TIP: Click here for a soft flour tortilla recipe
Cumin, coriander, cinnamon and cloves.
Fresh coriander and Mexican oregano, which has a subtle sweet taste.
Fresh jalapeño and Serrano chillies are usually used, but dried ancho chillies are also popular.
Limes, not lemons, are commonly used.
Refried, with oil and spices. You will always find a bowl on the table, as a side dish or filling, on its own, or mixed with beef, pork, chicken or seafood.
Ground, unsweetened chocolate, perhaps mixed with chilli, for a savoury sauce. Otherwise, sweetened and spiked with cinnamon for drinking.
The “365” dessert of Spain. Baked caramel custard, said to be served every day of the year, is also the favourite in Mexico.
Vegetable crisp nachos with homemade guacamole and cream cheese
Mango and chilli margarita
QUICK GLOSSARY OF MEXICAN FOOD
AGUAS FRESCAS – fruit or vegetable drink mixed with sugar and water
CAMOTE – sweet potato; often served with brown sugar and condensed milk
COCHINITA PIBIL – shredded pork with hilli and spices
ENCHILADAS – tortillas (can be stuffed) wth a variety of sauces
FRIJOLES – beans, refried, mashed or sautéed
NOPALES – cactus paddles eaten as vegetable
QUESADILLAS – tortilla filled, folded and cooked. Try chicken and avocado quesadilla
QUESO FRESCO – fresh mild white cheese
SOPAS – soups
SOPES – appetizers of small corn discs ried with toppings
TAMALES – corn dough, wrapped in corn husks and steamed
TLACOYOS – corn dough, filled with cheese, cooked and topped with salsa and salad
TOSTADA – crisp-fried tortilla with any number of toppings. Try tostados with prawn ceviche and avocado
TORTA – a "Mexican sandwich" comprising a soft roll with fillings
TORTILLA – thin, unleavened corn meal dough baked on a griddle. Try baked tortilla cake
TUNA – prickly pear (not the fish, which is atún)