MEXICAN FOOD has a rich heritage that begins at the dawn of civilization. More than 7,000 years ago, at the same time the Aztec people were designing intricate calendar systems and building astounding pyramids, they also were holding festivals accompanied by flavorful dishes.
One of the top three ethnic foods in the United States, along with Chinese and Italian. Yet Americans are more likely to mention Chipotle and Taco Bell when they think of “Mexican” cuisine.
Dine on lush tropical fruits, bean-stuffed chili peppers, spicy tomato sauces, grilled corn, honeyed sweet potatoes,
and cocoa-crusted turkey, and you find yourself in the land of the Aztecs.
Yes, the ancient Mexican diet was both flavorful and varied. In fact, many of the foods we take for granted today were first used as food by the Aztec cultures. Turkey, mangoes, corn, pineapples, peanuts, beans, squash, avocadoes, cocoa, vanilla, chilies, and sweet potatoes, for example, were all common elements in Aztec dishes. Even foods we identify with European countries such as Italy and tomatoes were first cultivated by the Aztecs.
Mexican food is also known for its combinations. It’s a rare dish that uses just one or two ingredients. Meats, for example, are marinated then drenched in sauces containing dozens of ingredients. Fish may be broiled or baked but it is always topped with a unique sauce.
Even something as simple as a salad of melon balls will have a tart sauce draped over it.
THE MEXICAN CULINARY HERITAGE is unique. One of the world’s most ancient cuisines, Mexican food is so important globally that it has been placed on UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
“Traditional Mexican cuisine is a comprehensive cultural model comprising farming, ritual practices, age-old skills, culinary techniques and ancestral community customs and manners. It is made possible by collective participation in the entire traditional food chain: from planting and harvesting to cooking and eating. The basis of the system is founded on corn, beans and chili; unique farming methods such as milpas (rotating swidden fields of corn and other crops) and chinampas (man-made farming islets in lake areas); cooking processes such as nixtamalization (lime-hulling maize, which increases its nutritional value); and singular utensils including grinding stones and stone mortars.
Native ingredients such as varieties of tomatoes, squashes, avocados, cocoa and vanilla augment the basic staples. Mexican cuisine is elaborate and symbol-laden, with everyday tortillas and tamales, both made of corn, forming an integral part of Day of the Dead offerings.
Collectives of female cooks and other practitioners devoted to raising crops and traditional cuisine are found in the State of Michoacán and across Mexico. Their knowledge and techniques express community identity, reinforce social bonds, and build stronger local, regional and national identities.”
website source :http://mexicanfoood.com