Are you hot on what food is actually Mexican or not? It’s often a bit of a mystery to some people. You’d be surprised at how far away from stereotype the reality of the food actually is! Check out the following- would you have expected it?
1. Cactus is for eating
It might seem like a bit of a cliche to think of cactus when you think of Mexico, but actually, cactus is a popular ingredient eaten nationwide. Known as nopales, the cactus pad is shaved of its spines, cut into strips and usually served simply just grilled, fried or even raw.
2. You can order tacos with beef tongue, cow brains or eyeballs?!
It might sound like anything goes here, but actually, beef head tacos are quite a delicacy. You first….
3. Tabasco chilli sauce is from the Mexican state of Tabasco
Sounds like it could be true doesn’t it…? But it’s not. Tabasco is actually produced in Louisiana in the United States of America, but even so, it had us thinking for a day or two on the road before we had access to Google again.
4. All Mexican food is spicy
Ok, so Mexico is home to some of the world’s hottest chillies, and it’s true that dried and fresh chillies are a staple ingredient to much of the authentic cuisine found here. However, we’ve found the really spicy stuff has been the salsas which are served separately in the middle of the table, for you to add yourself.
5. Tequila slammer is all the rage
It’s not a real thing in Mexico, sorry.
Traditionally, Tequila is a drink for sipping. It’s time to get brave as that little plate of lime and salt are nowhere to be seen once you get to Mexico. It also surprised us to learn that tequila is protected by law to say that it must specifically be made in a certain few towns surrounding the city of, you guessed it, Tequila. Did you even know that tequila is made from the agave plant?
6. Crickets are eaten as a snack
It might make your insides go wriggly at just the thought of eating crickets, but for many parts of Mexico, they’re an important ingredient. We saw them most in the region of Oaxaca where they’re known as ‘Chapulines’, they were often sold as street snacks after they’d been toasted and flavoured with garlic, lime juice and salt. Mmmm, crunchy…
7. Quesadillas are Tex Mex, not Mexican
Quesadillas are delicious snack or meal eaten in many parts of Mexico, though they’re often a little more exciting than the flat, pale things we get in England! They’re usually crunchy on the outside, oozing with stringy cheese and overflowing with different meats and vegetables. As for burritos and fajitas… well, we haven’t seen any yet…
8. Tomatoes, Chocolate and Vanilla come from Mexico
TRUE! (Well, sort of.)
So let’s not get technical here, but all of these ingredients are said to have had their origins in the land that is now known as Mexico and central America. We’ve got a lot to thank the Aztecs and Mayans for as these were the people who were said to have first farmed and used these foods. Sounds like a tasty existence if you ask me.
Lou and Dave are currently travelling through Mexico and are doing a grand job of updating us with all the food they discover along the way! To keep up with the full story and to find even more stunning photos, don’t forget to follow them on instagram @twohungrybrits and catch up with their blog.