Considered one of the most varied and flavoursome cuisines in the world, authentic Mexican food is a real treat for the senses.
In Mexico, mealtimes are family times, with everyone gathering at home to enjoy their meal together. The main meal of the day is referred to as “la comida” which simply translates as “meal”.
La Comida refers to lunch, and is a rather lavish affair by British standards. At a Mexican lunch time, expect to eat a lot! Lunch often begins with soup or a salad followed by a main course of meat, seafood or poultry with rice and beans and, of course, tortillas. It’s a leisurely affair with plenty of talking and laughter. If you’re going for lunch at a Mexican restaurant it’d be rude not to embrace the relaxed nature of this meal - so sit back and enjoy the company and the food!
Mexican food isn’t just for lunch, though. A Mexican-inspired breakfast is the perfect way to start the day. Expect to find dishes ranging from sweet breads and pastries to tropical fruits, granola, and yoghurt. To really kick start your day, be sure to order huevos rancheros; a mighty breakfast dish of corn tortillas filled with fried eggs and smothered in a chilli, tomato, and onion sauce.
What’s the Difference Between Tex-Mex and Mexican Food?
IIf you were under the impression that Mexican food and Tex-Mex were the same thing don’t worry, you’re not alone! Tex-mex and Mexican dishes often sit side-by- side on menus, making it hard to distinguish between the two. Here’s how to tell the difference:
Tex-Mex is a fusion of classic American and traditional Mexican cuisine. The easiest way to distinguish between traditional Mexican and Tex-Mex is to take a look at the ingredients used to make the dish. Ingredients such as beef, cheddar and other yellow cheeses, black beans, cumin, and tinned tomatoes are all typically used in Tex-Mex, but not Mexican food.
Chilli con carne is a classic example of Tex-Mex food. In fact, chilli con carne was actually a recipe developed by a German immigrant in New Braunfels in the late 1980’s. Steak fajitas are another Tex- Mex favourite, along with queso cheese dip, nachos, beef and cheese enchiladas, and refried beans.
Popular Mexican Dishes
Now we know what Tex-Mex looks like, it’s time to take a little look at some traditional Mexican dishes.
Traditional Mexican food incorporates a lot of corn, which is often used to make the pastry for dishes such as empanadas (stuffed and fried pasties), corn tamales (delicious stuffed dough parcels which are steamed in a corn husk), and quesadillas (corn or flour tortillas stuffed with cheese, vegetables, or meat, and grilled).
Other popular dishes include enchiladas (corn tortillas rolled around a filling and smothered in a tomato-chilli sauce), and tacos. If you’re looking for an authentic Mexican beverage, then be sure to try Hortacha. Hortacha is a creamy, slightly sweet, rice-based drink flavoured with cinnamon, vanilla, and sugar which can be enjoyed hot or cold. Of course, there’s also tequila, sangrita, and aguas frescas to be sampled, too.
Why Visit a Mexican Restaurant?
Mexican restaurants are perfect for hosting parties and celebrations of all sizes. Food plays a major role in pretty much every Mexican celebration, so it’s a failsafe for every occassion. The lively atmosphere and delicious food will make for a memorable and enjoyable meal.