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Comida mexicana

Posted: Tue Aug 26, 2008 11:59 pm UTC
by Encarnacion
After spending just two months in Mexico, i now enjoy real Mexican food- the stuff that is rarely if ever on the menu in US Mexican restaurants. Mole is one of my favorites, and so is sandwichón. Fresh agua de tamarindo or jamaica is always good and refreshing, and for dessert, a little pastel de tres leches or elote are yummy. So what do you dig from Mexico?

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 12:20 am UTC
by PictureSarah
Tamales! I really want to make them, but it's such an ordeal. Also I can't seem to find a really good recipe for veggie ones.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 12:35 am UTC
by kellsbells
Mm, pastel de tres leches is amazing. In one of my Spanish classes a couple of people made that, and it was so delicious. I should really look up a good recipe for it.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 12:59 am UTC
by 3fj
Call me boring, but the culmination of Mexican cooking for me is a decent fajita. Theres a proper Mexican restaurant down the town called (wait for it) rancho panchos.

The biggest soft tortillas with the tonnes of juicy chicken, peppers and sauce, just how i like it.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 1:23 pm UTC
by PatrickRsGhost
Flan. That stuff is the nectar of the Mayan, Toltecan, and Aztec gods.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 2:44 pm UTC
by Bakemaster
I love flan. My sister prefers fried ice cream, or sopapillas, but I don't know if those are actually Mexican.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 2:59 pm UTC
by PatrickRsGhost
Bakemaster wrote:I love flan. My sister prefers fried ice cream, or sopapillas, but I don't know if those are actually Mexican.


Sopapillas kinda-sorta-are-are-not authentic Mexican.

Fried ice cream, on the other hand, definitely is NOT.

As it turns out, flan is a bit more culturally diverse than thought. It's still orgasmically delicious regardless of country of origin.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 3:22 pm UTC
by Bakemaster
Hard to figure out what's from where. I've seen mole served at a number of different places in this area, and you can find tamarind and horchata drinks at pretty much any of the small burrito-taco-quesadilla places, but I've never heard of sandwichón.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 4:25 am UTC
by Encarnacion
Well, sandwichón has pretty much become my favorite food* as of late. Essentially it is like a spicy tuna salad sandwich, but made like a lasagna. You can find recipes on google, but I'll explain the kind I had here too. The kind I had feeds about 20-30, you might not want that much, so I won't bother with how much of what ingredient. Amounts, however, go from most to least in my lists. First mix together sour cream, mayo, canned tuna, finely chopped/grated celery and carrots, and jalapeños or chipotles (which are the same thing, but it's called a jalapeño when fresh and chipotles when roasted), until it is smoothly mixed, and about a bit too thick to use as a chip dip. Then blend some more sour cream, cream cheese, and chipotles or other roasted peppers together, this time into a liquid (the liquid should be a pastel color of the peppers). Then layer white bread on the bottom of a casserole dish, cut off the crusts if you so desire, and then slather on some of the blended liquid, then put some of the tuna salad mixture and layer that in there. Repeat this procedure about 3-4 times more, ending with a layer of bread and the liquid, and then cover it and put it all in the refrigerator for about 3-6 hours.
*
Spoiler:
Food might not be the right word for it. More like guilty pleasure, or something you have as a side to your huge garden salad.

If you would want to make it healthier, you could substitute whole grain bread, all fat free/low fat dairy products and mayo, and use a lot more crispy veggies. If I were to make this for myself, I would freely commit such errors, and I might even use plain yogurt to replace most to all of the dairy. This dish would be great to take to a party, as it is super simple, feeds a lot of people for not a whole lot of $, and you can impress people by knowing how to make a unique Mexican dish.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 11:10 pm UTC
by TheAmazingRando
I don't like tamarind-flavored drinks. Jamaica, on the other hand, is quite good.
But, really, outside of San Diego-style Mexican food, the only things I've ever had in Mexico were street tacos and menudo soup. The street tacos are delicious, menudo is kinda meh but unlike many people, I'm not disgusted by it.

I had a tongue burrito at a place in town once. The taste was decent but the texture got old fast.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Fri Aug 29, 2008 5:14 am UTC
by Kizyr
The first test I do for any Mexican restaurant is to order chile relleno. That's usually a good metric by which to judge the general quality of the food, I've found, and is one of my favorite things when it's made right.

Aside from that, enchiladas. Soft and lots of filling. The best ones I've had have been in Mexico.

Oh, and watermelon juice. It's not so common up here, but once you get closer to Central America it's a lot easier to find. Speaking of which, there're a few other things further south from Mexico that I like, but that's off topic. KF

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 9:00 pm UTC
by GonzoMcFonzo
Barrbacoa, Lengua, Carne Guisada, Mole, Chilaquiles, Menudo... I could go on like this for hours; I love it all. I was blessed growing up with a first generation Mexican-American mother who loves to cook and is damn good at it. I remeber coming home from highschool and my then 6-year old brother would be in the kitchen rolling out tortillas for dinner. I am literally nearly drooling on the keyboard just thinking about it.

One of my favorite quick, easy breakfast foods is a taco de chorrizo con pappas. People are so used to chorrizo con huevos that mixing chorrizo with anything other than eggs doesn't even occur to them.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Sat Nov 08, 2008 2:32 am UTC
by Encarnacion
This may be seen as a creator-bump, and that's ok with me. Just had to chime in and say that I am having sandwichón right now, and it is glorious. This one is a little different (I added in my own chile as it was made for little kids) and it has a fair bit of corn in it, but my is it good. That is all.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 2:17 am UTC
by annals
Mmm, Mexican food. I don't really have a favorite kind, but there's this garlic fish dish that a restaurant in town makes that is amazing, as long as you don't plan on any human interaction for the next week or so.

The best Mexican food I've ever eaten came from a little taco truck near my house. There was some spice or combination of spices they used in the meat--I couldn't tell exactly what it was, but it was so, so good. Unfortunately, they were shut down recently--turned out the tacos were a cover for their crack dealing.

Also, those little wheel things? You know? Those are awesome.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 5:10 pm UTC
by Allenr
I used to work in a mexican resturant and I came to love chimichangas. The way they mad them was to just take a large amount of meat and cheese, wrap it in a tortila, fry it, then cover it with cheese sauce. Its unbelievable I didnt gain a ton of weight while working there.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 4:58 am UTC
by tday93
mexcian food... mmmmm.... i love living in california...


well, my favorite is closer to spanish than mexican, but i've always had a soft spot for ceviche...

(the soft spot is in my stomach)

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 3:11 am UTC
by Absolute
I recently moved from L.A. to Atlanta, does anyone know of a Mexican restaurant in the area that doesn't suck?

You wouldn't believe what passes for Mexican food in the south, menudo and horchata come from cans, and everything else is covered in a flavorless white sauce they have the audacity to call queso. Making proper menudo, or better yet pozole, is a little too time-consuming for me, anyone have an easy recipe which is almost as good?

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Tue Nov 18, 2008 2:10 am UTC
by PatrickRsGhost
Absolute wrote:I recently moved from L.A. to Atlanta, does anyone know of a Mexican restaurant in the area that doesn't suck?

You wouldn't believe what passes for Mexican food in the south, menudo and horchata come from cans, and everything else is covered in a flavorless white sauce they have the audacity to call queso. Making proper menudo, or better yet pozole, is a little too time-consuming for me, anyone have an easy recipe which is almost as good?


Want a tip for finding good Mexican food in Atlanta? Don't look in Atlanta. Look in the outlying cities, like Conyers, Stone Mountain, Douglasville, Carrollton, Cumming, Marietta, basically any town outside of I-285.

Another tip: The fancier-looking the exterior of the restaurant, or the more "authentically Spanish/Mexican" the design of the restaurant, the more likely it will be nasty. Go for the restaurants whose interiors are decorated or structured to look Spanish or Mexican. Preferably, one that's inside a shopping center.

I speak from experience, the restaurants with the best food have been the ones found in shopping centers and look like a Mexican or Spanish restaurant only on the inside. A stand-alone building I tend to stay away from, since I've had nothing but bad experiences there. I'm looking at you, La Fiesta.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Tue Nov 18, 2008 2:38 pm UTC
by 22/7
PatrickRsGhost wrote:A stand-alone building I tend to stay away from, since I've had nothing but bad experiences there. I'm looking at you, La Fiesta.
Isn't La Fiesta a grocery store? It is in Texas at least.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2008 12:34 am UTC
by PatrickRsGhost
22/7 wrote:
PatrickRsGhost wrote:A stand-alone building I tend to stay away from, since I've had nothing but bad experiences there. I'm looking at you, La Fiesta.
Isn't La Fiesta a grocery store? It is in Texas at least.


It's a Mexican restaurant chain here. Which explains everything.

Looks like they're a chain in Texas as well, mainly in Houston.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2008 4:50 pm UTC
by 22/7
Ah, see, Houston isn't so much a part of Texas as it is a part of Hell.

And a Mexican restaurant being a part of a chain doesn't necessarily exclude it from being a good Mexican restaurant (La Charreada in Indiana, for example), but you're right in that the odds suddenly become stacked against it.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Fri Nov 21, 2008 2:12 am UTC
by PatrickRsGhost
22/7 wrote:Ah, see, Houston isn't so much a part of Texas as it is a part of Hell.

And a Mexican restaurant being a part of a chain doesn't necessarily exclude it from being a good Mexican restaurant (La Charreada in Indiana, for example), but you're right in that the odds suddenly become stacked against it.


There might be a few exceptions, but to me a chain restaurant isn't one w/ more than one location in a small location, it's if there's several locations in two or more states. La Charreada would be one of these exceptions, since they're only in one state, and are more than likely family-owned and run.

A good example of a bad Mexican chain restaurant (besides La Fiesta) would be On The Border. The two or three times I ate there, I wasn't satisfied at all.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Fri Nov 21, 2008 4:56 pm UTC
by 22/7
PatrickRsGhost wrote:There might be a few exceptions, but to me a chain restaurant isn't one w/ more than one location in a small location, it's if there's several locations in two or more states. La Charreada would be one of these exceptions, since they're only in one state, and are more than likely family-owned and run.
Fair enough. I guess I'd consider it a chain once there are more than one place and they've got the same menu, the same decorations, etc., but potato, tomato and whatnot. And yes, La Char is all family owned. One chunk of the family came up and started the first one and every time it gets to where it's doing really well, they bring more of that same family up, show them how to run it, and move to a different part of Indiana to start a new one.
PatrickRsGhost wrote:A good example of a bad Mexican chain restaurant (besides La Fiesta) would be On The Border. The two or three times I ate there, I wasn't satisfied at all.
Well, see, the problem is that On The Border isn't Mexican food. It's Tex-Mex. It's very, very different. That said, I'm not sure that I actually know of any true Mexican chains.

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Wed Dec 24, 2008 2:30 pm UTC
by kaitou
I've given up on finding a decent Mexican restaurant in this area; so, I make my own. The first or second weekend in May, I throw a "Cinco de Mayo" party (not Mexican Independence, but the day they beat the French, which shows that the Mexicans need the least excuse to throw a party). On occasion, I have leftovers. The usual first things to go are my chiles rellenos and cheese enchiladas. One time I did mole (but, I'm not a big mole fan; so that didn't happen again). I'd like to try doing tamales, but the thought of doing tamales for 40 seems a bit overwhelming (figuring out how to do rellenos for 40 was bad enough).

Absolute wrote:Making proper menudo, or better yet pozole, is a little too time-consuming for me, anyone have an easy recipe which is almost as good?

Cookbook recommendations: Diana Kennedy's "The Art of Mexican Cooking" is my favorite. It does have recipes for Pozole Verde and Menudo Blanco Sonorese, but the don't look simple. I have the original (now out of print) edition. There is a new edition out which I assume is as at least as good as the original.

Second best is "Authentic Mexican" by Rick Bayless. It also has Pozole and Menudo recipes. They, too, don't look trivial. The hardest part seems to be finding the ingredients (tripe, pig's feet, pig's head aren't exactly common).

Re: Comida mexicana

Posted: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:04 pm UTC
by Cleverdan22
I can make a pretty epic cheese quesadilla. If I'm making a snack for me, I do pre-shredded cheese and that's it. If I have friends over, I grate the cheese. If I need to make dinner, I either throw ham, mushrooms, or both in. It's really good! Dang. Now I have to go fix one; I made myself hungry.