Like most countries, Mexico boasts a variety of delicious dishes. Because of the variance of Mexico’s geographical regions, Mexican cuisine also has a large variety of dishes to offer. And though you may be familiar with many Mexican dishes popular in the United States, here are a few authentic dishes from Mexico that are less well known, but which deserve just as much praise.
Aguachile is a seafood dish from the coast of Sinaloa, Mexico, and it is quite popular in the summertime. This dish is similar to ceviche in that it is traditionally made with fresh, raw seafood, which can be types of fish or shrimp. The classic aguachile recipe is made with fresh shrimp immersed in a seasoned liquid. The seasoning usually includes lime juice, salt, chilies, onion, and sometimes cilantro. Fresh vegetables can also be added, such as cucumbers. After preparation, aguachile is always immediately served, like ceviche. If you are looking for a cool yet spicy dish, aguachile is for you.
Esquites is a popular dish all over Mexico, often served as a snack by street vendors. The name “esquites” comes from a Nahuatl word that means “toasted corn,” which is appropriate since esquites is a corn dish. Made from mature corn, grains are traditionally boiled in salted water. They are then mixed with juice and chiles. Once mixed, this is usually topped with mayo, cheese, chili powder, and lime juice. Street vendors serve esquites warm in a cup and it is a popular afternoon snack. It is even considered healthy! If you enjoy spicy, chewy corn, try this dish.
Mixiote is a traditional barbecue meat dish from the Basin of Mexico. This dish is traditionally made with rabbit or mutton but other types of meat can also be used. Whichever meat is chosen for the dish is cubed and seasoned. The seasoning can vary, but is usually a mix of thyme, bay, marjoram, and peppers (such as pasilla and guajillo). Other spices commonly used can include cloves, cumin, and sometimes garlic. The meat is then wrapped in small packages to be steamed. Traditionally the wrapping for the meat is made of maguey leaves, which gives the dish its unique flavor. However, it is now almost always made with regular baking parchment because the maguey plant was protected by a decree in the 1980s. If you are interested in a dish with a unique flavor, consider mixiote.
Aguachile, esquites, and mixiote are just a few examples of the many delectable dishes you will find in Mexico, but not as often in the United States. If you are visiting Mexico, keep an eye out for opportunities to try these unique tastes. If not, check the menus at authentic Mexican restaurants in your area, or try a recipe at home.
If you are looking for authentic Mexican cuisine, visit El Golfo de Mexico, located in San Marcos, TX.