What is unique about Mexican food

Mexican cuisine for beginners

4 essential ingredients that you should always have on hand

If you can only think of tacos and guacamole when it comes to Mexican food, then you've missed a lot. The cuisine of Mexico is complex, regional, unique and one of the most popular cuisines in the world. Unesco has even included traditional Mexican cuisine, alongside the Neapolitan art of pizza making, Belgian beer culture and French cuisine, in the list of the "intangible world cultural heritage of mankind".

We'll show you four of the most important ingredients so that you can enjoy the varied Mexican cuisine at home.

Beans are a traditional staple in Mexican cuisine and the main source of protein in many dishes. They are hearty, healthy, inexpensive and can be found in countless Mexican dishes - from breakfast to dinner, as a taco filling, in soups and sauces.

It's not a Mexican dish per se, but our 3-Bean Chili from the slow cooker contains some classic Mexican flavors and, above all, lots of beans. Cooking canned beans is cheap and easy, but if you can, you should still use dried beans because they retain their shape and texture much better than their canned counterparts. They are also available in different versions and contain less sodium. You can combine several types of beans without hesitation - it gives your chilli a fantastic taste

Don't worry if you can't stand heat - the selection of chillies used in Mexican cuisine is aromatic and more intense in taste, but not necessarily hotter. Chilies are used either fresh or pickled, for example as jalapeƱos and serranos, which give off direct heat, but also dried like pasillas, quajillos and chipotles. They give a dish smoky, earthy and almost sweet flavors.

In Mexico it is common to use different chili peppers in one recipe. If you are unsure about this, one basic rule applies to both fresh and dried chili peppers: The small ones are usually hotter. Removing the pips and stems can help reduce the heat a little. Dried chillies are usually soaked in hot water for about 20-30 minutes before they are used. Or, like nuts and spices, they can be roasted in a hot pan before pounding them in a mortar. Dare to try our Mexican chicken with corn waffles to familiarize yourself with dried chillies.

Not only does corn originate in Mexico, it is also a popular staple in Mexican cuisine, although flour and rice are increasingly imported. The Mexican aborigines were actually the first, around 1200 BC. Cultivated maize. "Nixtamalization" is the name of the process in which corn is made from corn, also known as masa. Masa is a big part of the Mexican diet and comes in a variety of forms - from corn tortillas to tamales. Tortillas are often used as a side dish, similar to bread in Europe or rice in Asia. For the taste of Mexico, you can get some corn tortillas and let our Mexican chicken tacos melt on your tongue.

Chocolate, too, originally comes from Mexico and was brought to Europe by the Spaniards, who made it into the chocolate we know and love today. But it is not a copy of the original, because Mexican chocolate is made from roasted cocoa nibs and cinnamon and is therefore grainier in structure and more intense in aroma than we know it.

It is often refined with spices or chillies and is a unique ingredient depending on the region. It is traditionally used for both sweet foods such as hot chocolate and savory dishes such as Mexican mole chicken. If you're using European chocolate for this recipe, consider adding a teaspoon of cinnamon. Or try this hot chocolate and add chili peppers or cayenne. This gives you a new, refined aroma.

Published on May 5, 2018