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Christmas in Mexico - Christmas Eve Salad
Christmas Eve in Mexico is an occasion for a family dinner, served before everybody goes off to Midnight Mass, known as “Misa de Gallo”, cockerel’s mass. The meal starts off with a special Christmas Eve salad, Ensalada de Noche Buena, which is a rather peculiar concoction.
Christmas in Mexico - Posadas and Piñatas
The run-up to Christmas in Mexico is one long series of parties – in fact a very specific type of party which takes place over the nine days prior to Christmas, and goes by the name of “posada". It involves much singing and a piñata filled with fruit, nuts, chocolate and delicious "polvorones".
Christmas in Mexico - Rum Punch
Christmas in Mexico means posadas, piñatas and a sweet, fruity punch known as “Ponche Navideño” or Christmas punch, which is served to posada guests in Mexican homes, as well as on the street corners, where it scents the night air with its sweet, plummy steam.
The Sauces of Mexico - Manchamanteles
The name speaks for itself – mancha manteles is Spanish for table cloth stainer, and this brick red sauce, when spilled on a white table cloth or down the front of a white shirt, can cause very serious damage indeed.
Turkey, the American Peacock
The turkey is native to the Americas, and its earliest habitat seems to have been the highlands of Mexico, where fossils ten million years old have been found on the central plateau near Puebla. It was domesticated by the Aztecs who honoured it with a religious festival held every 200 days.
The Sauces of Mexico – Pipián Recipe
A pipián is a sauce thickened with ground seeds or nuts and Mexican food at its most historical and authentically pre-hispanic. It belongs to the family of the great “moles” of Mexico, and while the word mole simply means sauce, today it is almost invariably a sauce containing chillies.
The Sauces of Mexico - Guacamole Recipe
Guacamole is one of the best known Mexican dishes and its fame has spread far and wide, to the extent that you can buy it in a tub in the refrigerated section of a supermarket, and even a ‘long-life’ version in a jar - and if that is all you have ever tasted, you are in for a big surprise.
The Day of the Dead in Mexico
In late October, every sweet shop and street stall in Mexico City decks itself out in garlands of deep yellow marigolds, colourful tissue paper cut-outs of pumpkins and skeletons, and best of all, beautifully crafted sugar skulls with big toothy grins, shining eyes and names on their foreheads.
The Pumpkins, a Very American Family
The pumpkin does not have much to brag about on the gastronomic stage, except perhaps for its wonderfully warm, vibrant hue. This does not mean, however, that that it has failed to find fame - on the contrary, as it has been lucky enough to be immortalised not once but twice.
Huitlacoche, the Truffle of Mexico
Rainy seasons bring fungi, and the summer and early autumn markets in Mexico, particularly in the mountains, are full of wild mushrooms, from ceps, morels, pieds de mouton, bright orange trompetitas and chanterelles, to the incredibly sinister-looking huitlacoche, known as the truffle of Mexico.
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