When we think of Mexican food, what it comes to mind are beef burritos, fajitas, nachos, and cheese dip, but authentic Mexican food does not really incorporate ingredients such as beef, black beans, cheddar cheese, and wheat flour. What we call as Mexican food has been influenced by Texas, when Mexico and Texas became a Spanish colony called as New Spain for over three hundred years. Even though Texas became a part of the United States in 1845, it still maintained its ties with Mexico, thus influencing food, culture, and tradition. When Mexican settlers came to Texas, they learn how to incorporate Mexican cuisine with Texan ingredients such as beef and wheat flour which are scarcely found south of the border.
The Tejanos, or people who are living in Texas with Mexican descent, created and sold “chili con carne” which is a Tex-Mex cuisine, that grew so much in popularity. After chili con carne was discovered, nachos were born around fifty years later, and the rest is history. The most common are soft-shell tacos with lightly grilled or steamed tortillas because hard-shell tacos are also scarce in Mexico. The authentic Mexican tacos have ingredients like white cheese, cilantro, onions, and limes, whereas their original Mexican salsa is a combination of onions, cilantro, and fresh tomatoes. Wheat tortillas are not available down south, and rather than fajitas, you can try an authentic dish such as shredded beef with avocado and lime. The two most commonly sought authentic Mexican desserts are three milk cake (pastel de tres leches), and flan. As more people settled in Texas, there was a higher demand for Mexican food, and they began using wheat flour and beef which were not common in Mexico. Eventually, Mexican restaurant owners incorporated Texan and Mexican cuisines such as putting ground beef in enchiladas, thus Tex-Mex came to life.
Generally, the difference between Tex-Mex food and Mexican food is the use of key ingredients found in the US that are scarce in South or the Rio Grande such as beef, wheat flour, yellow cheese, canned vegetables, cumin and black beans. Texan ranchers’ meat of choice was beef which was hardly used in Mexican cuisine, outside of the country’s extreme Northern reaches, while cumin was imported to the US from India. The general rule to determine if it is an authentic food is that the more Tex-Mex the food is when there is more starch. If you need more information about Mexican recipes and Mexican groceries, you can always visit our website or contact us directly. Find out the famous Mexican snacks, chili sauce, Mexican food, and a lot more!Smart Tips For Finding Recipes