What Influenced the Origin of Mexican Cuisine?

Every cultural cuisine is unique. Various dishes and drinks reflect the specific geographical location and the creative ingenuity of the people. Native grown ingredients and techniques are used to design what we’ve come to love as traditional culinary trademarks for each culture worldwide. 

Mexican cuisine is a favorite anywhere you go. It’s normal to crave Mexican food after you’ve enjoyed a taste of some of their most popular dishes. What makes it so popular? What’s the historical influence behind the food we love? It turns out its origins are rich in customs carried forward through time to become what it is today.

Mexican Food: How it All Began

Rewind the hands of time to before Spanish colonization and you’ll find the indigenous people of Mexico hunting and gathering the animals and food native to the land. What was commonly found growing in this part of the world? At this time, the Aztec and Mayan people were known to use chili peppers, honey, salt, and chocolate in their cooking. 

For animal protein, wild turkey and duck were a normal part of their diets. Herbs, spices, and corn were often ground up into powder forms to use for flavoring or tortilla mix. Open fires or wrapping foods in thick leaves to steam underground were also common practice. 

The Spanish Influence on Mexican Cooking

When the Spanish began to mix into the indigenous Mexican culture, so did their influence on flavors, styles of food, and methods of cooking. They brought with them the taste of Spain and what was loved by them from their homeland. They naturally wished to replicate their native dishes with the ingredients they brought from Spain. Many of these items included olive oil, rice, garlic, cinnamon, coriander, and other spices. 

For meat, the Spanish often cooked with pigs, sheep, cows, chicken, and goats. Cows and goats were used to make cheese which became a key ingredient in many of the dishes we currently have. Throughout the many years of colonization, and the blending of what was already native, what resulted was the cultural fusion that we now know as Mexican cuisine.

Mexican Food Today

Mexican cuisine today is known for its rich flavors using a wide range of spices with vegetables, legumes,  beans, rice, corn, chili peppers, salsa, guacamole, tortillas, and meats and cheese to name a few. Enchiladas and tacos emerged through the centuries from ancient Mexico. 

For example, tacos have been a staple in traditional Mexican cuisine whereby corn tortillas were used to hold fillings while still hot from the open fire. Tacos, burritos, and enchiladas continue to be diverse in the many ways they can be modified with types of salsa, protein, and other filling ingredients. 

Mexican food is fresh and full of flavor! It uses ingredients that vary in spicy tastes and dishes that make you crave more. You’ll often find lime wedges on the side of your plate as an extra garnish to squeeze over your favorite Mexican meal. There is no wonder Mexican food is sought after in all places in the world. 

The Original Grande Has the Mexican Food You Crave

Need your Mexican food fix? We understand. It’s why we offer a menu filled with yummy options for all ages. Fuel your inner fiesta by experiencing any of our delicious Mexican food varieties. We offer all types of tacos, burritos, sanchos, enchiladas, and mucho more! Visit a location near you and see why people are saying “Viva Grande!” after visiting The Original Grande.

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