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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.
The Drinks of Mexico – Horchata Recipe
In Mexico, grains and nuts are used to concoct horchata, one of the most popular aguas frescas, fresh waters, which are sold in huge glass jars at market stands, in ice-packed barrows on the streets, and in restaurants. One of its greatest talents is its ability to calm a chilli blasted palate!
From Poldark to Pachuca – A Pasty’s Journey
The Cornish pasty is a stalwart of British gastronomy, steeped in tradition, history and folklore. However, it has travelled widely, following the Cornish tin miners across the globe, and in the 19th century, it reached Mexico and the silver mines of Pachuca and Mineral del Monte.
The Sauces of Mexico - Encacahuatado
A sauce thickened with seeds and nuts is an utterly pre-Hispanic concept, and Spanish chroniclers who accompanied Hernán Cortés during the conquest of Mexico talked in their accounts of great earthenware cazuelas full of bubbling red sauces which were thickened in precisely this way.
The Sauces of Mexico - Cooked Tomato Sauce
A cooked tomato sauce is one of the most important building blocks of Mexican cuisine. Not only does it have a role to play in its own right, but it is also a starting point for countless other dishes for behind many great classical Mexican culinary creations stands the “salsa de tomate cocida”.
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