If you are going to start cooking Mexican food, you need to make sure you have all the necessary ingredients to cook it. Mexican food uses special ingredients. The most common ingredients include corn, peanuts, avocado, cocoa (chocolate), shrimp, tomatillos, tomatoes, potatoes, and beans. Some of the more specialized ingredients are:
Coriander, (also called Chinese parsley) is the name given to the leaves of the coriander plant (Coriandrum sativum). It used to be difficult to obtain, but coriander is now available in almost every grocery store. It is best when used fresh. The leaves are usually plucked from the stems to make guacamole or salsa.
This is a dried corn kernel that is cooked with lime and ground into a paste. This pasta is then dehydrated into flour. Mexican tortillas are made with this flour. However, it is not necessary to make tortillas from scratch, as they are widely available in supermarkets. Although many cooks believe that making fresh corn and flour tortillas is a rewarding part of Mexican cuisine, many people prefer store bought tortillas because it is so much easier than using a lengthy process of pressing each tortilla individually.
Ancho peppers are dried poblano peppers and are used in chili peppers or marinades. Another type of Chile is the Guajillo Chiles. It is a bit spicier and is best used in soups or stews.
Common Mexican dishes also vary by region and family influences. There are many Mexican dishes that a novice chef can easily cook. Many of these may be familiar to you due to the many Mexican restaurants that abound.
The “salsas” (or sauces) in Mexican cuisine are very common. It seems that no two sauces are the same because each has been influenced by previous generations in a family. Pico de gallo is a cold sauce that contains fresh chili peppers, chopped tomatoes, onions, and cilantro.
A chili is stuffed with pork, beef, cheese, or other fillings, which are dipped in beaten egg and deep-fried. They are served in a fine tomato broth.
A flour or corn tortilla filled with cheese (often a mild Mexican-style farmer’s cheese, such as Queso Fresco), beef, chicken, or pork.
The Chalup is a corn tortilla, fried in the shape of a bowl and then filled with shredded chicken, pork, beef, or beans. It is usually topped with guacamole and salsa.
Enchiladas are made with corn tortillas that are filled with meat and cheese, rolled (or stacked), and topped with chili-cheese sauce.
The Taco is a curved fried corn tortilla containing cheese, meats, cheeses, or beans topped with diced onion, diced lettuce, and salsa. A “soft” taco is made with flour tortillas instead of corn and became popular in “Mexican” fast food restaurants.
Try the Mexican cuisine. You may find yourself cooking more and more as your family asks for it.