Mexican food is delicious and it’s so much more. Words that describe Mexican food?
- Comfort Food
Through an array of different spices and herb combinations, mingled with meats and/or vegetables, Mexican food has become a favorite to many people, maybe all around the world?!
It’s the little things that make all the difference at times. It’s the unseen ingredients that uphold “Delicious” in every bite. The essentials of many delicious ethnic foods, including flavorful Mexican cuisine are garlic, onion, salt and black pepper. Here is a minimal list of some of the most used spices and herbs that help spark the “essentials” in Mexican food and give it its rich flavor, authenticity and “top of the list” reputation. These ingredients leave a lingering impression on Mexican food lovers everywhere.
Bay leaf: Is subtle in flavor,it’s used to enhance other flavors or balance strong flavors like cumin. It is used in stews or in the savory meat fillings used in tamales. A word of caution, one bay leaf is enough, using too much bay will bring out a bitter taste in your dish.
Chiles: dried or fresh, are the most important ingredient in Mexican food because of the various flavorful textures and levels of “heat” they will infuse. Used sparingly, chiles in the right combination with other herbs and spices help produce the much acclaimed authentic Mexican food flavors.
Cilantro- Is appealing for its bright green color and its tangy flavor. Fresh cilantro is a favorite in salsas and sauces. Combined with the strong flavor of cumin and zesty lemon juice, cilantro will control the heat of chiles. These pretty bright leaves also make a nice looking garnish.
Cinnamon: Is derived from the inside bark of certain trees, thus the strong warm woody and spicy flavor. This spice is sometimes used in savory Mexican food, but it is most popular in delicious drinks like Horchata and an array of yummy desserts. Texas Lone Star Tamales offers absolutely delicious cinnamon infused sweet tamales called Sweet Creamy Pumpkin Tamales or Cinnamon Raisin Apple Tamales.
Cloves: are another strong spice. In Spanish it is called Clavo, meaning Nail, referring to their shape and perhaps their striking strong scent and flavor. Cloves have a touch of sweetness but also add a different kind of heat and flavor to Mexican food. When they’re infused with some of the other milder spices they add a nice bite to savory and sweet Mexican dishes. It is important to note that because these tiny “nails” are mighty they should also be used very sparingly.
Cumin is not necessarily a “Mexican spice” but it is recognized in delicious Mexican foods, it is a leading ingredient in taco seasonings, salsa and sauces. A personal observation about cumin is that it puts off a strong-smelling scent that is not necessarily attractive. It can over power your dish if too much is added to your delicious Mexican creation.
Chili powder: is the key ingredient for yummy taco seasonings but its use goes beyond that. Chili powder in your red sauces will brighten their color and enhance their flavor.
Lemons: are also a refreshing addition to Mexican food. Lemon juice can be added to salsa, used as a salad dressing and squeezed over fresh fruits and veggies with a dash of salt or chile powder. You will smack your lips at the tangy delight it gives.
Mexican Oregano: has a combination of sweet and citrus flavor. It is cooked right in stews, meats and veggies to “sweeten” the bite of chiles also simmering in the mix. Oregano is also an added tangy garnish for the popular Pozole dish.
This is just a glimpse into the “little things” that make Mexican food so inviting and friendly. Texas Lone Star Tamales invites you to try Mexican style Texas tamales, that are very much infused with these delicious flavors, whether they are sweet or savory, they are authentically delicious.