Mexican food is one of the most popular cuisines in the world. A combination of crunch, color, and chili (definitely!), many food enthusiast would love to have a taste of an authentic Mexican dish.
However, there really is a great confusion with the authenticity of many “Mexican” dishes as there are plenty of Americanized versions. But if you truly want to taste the real deal, better be informed. Basically Mexican food can be divided into two context, “native” and “authentic.” Native Mexican dishes contain ingredients also available to native Mexicans such as corn, goat, fish, and tomatoes. Calling it authentic, the dish must have been traditionally prepared in the country for more than 50 years, signifying that the dish already owned its flavor to its origin.
Now, let’s decrypt what make Mexican dishes delightfully delicious! Here are a few of native spices and ingredients most commonly used in their cooking.
Onions and Garlic
These two are simply the basic ingredients in Mexican food. You see them in your salsa, Spanish rice, and more. They come fresh and powdered, whatever your choice is, you got to get them if you are cooking a Mexican dish.
Oregano, Cumin, and Chili Powder
We know Mexicans love spices, and it is truly the signature of their dish. Finding the perfect balance between flavor is vital to their food, and it is also the beauty of their cooking.
Oregano gives an earthy flavor to dishes, while Cumin gives a unique tinge of bitterness. Chili powder is of course for that hot, spicy taste that many people love to eat as they find it incredibly appetizing.
In traditional Mexican cuisine, you can’t find butter. The most common fat they use for cooking is lard that gives a wonderful taste to cooked beans and the masa for tamales.
There is no more Mexican than corn—plentiful of them for that matter. Corn has been used by Mexicans for centuries and it is considered as their main sources of nutrition. Way back in history, meat is scarce in Mexico, so corn and vegetables are their primary staple. Soon, the Spaniards brought other variety of spices including meat, chicken, cheese, and others, which they soon included in their traditional dishes.
Corn is cooked in many ways in Mexican dishes, from spiced corn cobs, to tortillas and masa’s, Mexicans were able to play with as much ingredient in this produce that gained them much popularity.
Tomatoes anyone? Of course, who wouldn’t want tomatoes on their Mexican dishes. Your taco and tortillas would taste more incredible if you got a fresh salsa to sauce and spice things up. Fresh or canned tomatoes are also used as flavor for salads, soups, and rice.