We all know that the gastronomy of our country is Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, as it was declared since 2010 by UNESCO, but not everyone knows why.
The basic elements of Mexican cuisine are corn, beans and chili. However, it is much more complex than that; there are countless native products that are now an essential part of the gastronomy of other countries.
The kings of our kitchen
The avocado for example, which is one of the most important ingredients for the gastronomy of Central and South America; the sesame : which in addition to being used in Mexico in different dishes as an ingredient and to decorate, is an essential component of dishes in China and Japan. Peanuts, which found popularity among American soldiers during World Wars 1 and 2 as a good source of protein. The gum that was originally chewed by the Mayans, and which is now consumed worldwide, is another important example.
And not to mention the chili, which we have already told you a little about in this and this blog, and which cannot be missing in the kitchen and on the Mexican table. There are more than 50 varieties in Mexico, of which we use not only in dishes but even medicinally; Another element that put us on the map was chocolate, or rather, the fruit from which it comes, cocoa. The pod of this was so valuable to the indigenous peoples that it was used as currency; it was even more valuable than gold.
The beans are another favorite of our diet: they are consumed in any meal, either as a main dish or as a side dish. There are more than 50 species of beans in Mexico, of which the most consumed varieties are mayocoba, Peruvian, flor de Mayo and flor de Junio, garbancillo, manzano, black San Luis, black Querétaro and pinto, as We previously told you here. Just as important as beans is corn, the basic food for our people. Without it, there would be no tortillas, tamales, atole, pozole, gorditas, tascalate... Our gastronomy would not exist as it is today.
Another very Mexican product and definitely unique in our preparations is the nopal. It is in the national coat of arms, in our coins and our flag; and there are records of its use from 20 thousand years ago, when the first settlers settled in Mexico. Currently it is used not only as food, but in cosmetics, livestock, construction and much more
On the other hand, and almost like chocolate's natural partner, we have vanilla: it is an icon of colonial and current confectionery in the country. This Mexican orchid has a unique process in its fertilization, since it needs the help of the melipona bee, and to germinate it needs the collaboration of a fungus that helps it obtain nutrients from the earth. Although it is now grown in places like Madagascar and pollinated by hand, it is a product that originates from our land, specifically from the south of the country, and was originally used to sweeten the chocolate drink that was reserved for the nobility and soldiers before go to battle
The truth is that our gastronomy has earned the designation of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity for many of these elements that are present in our diet long before the arrival of the Spanish. Our basics have survived conquests, wars, evolution in our technology, countless cultural changes.They give us identity, history and are a source of pride at home and abroad. The preparation techniques and the elements that we use to cook also remain; the comal, the metate, the clay pots, the jícaras, the molcajete, the burying of the barbecue, the mixiote or the pibil as a cooking method, the tatemar, grinding and drying in the air.
So the next time you're eating a bean taco with martajada sauce, remember that our food that would seem so ordinary is much more than that; it is a symbol of our history as Mexicans, part of our folklore and that is why at Don Zabor we bring part of this history to your table.
Would you like to know more about the history and culture that surround our gastronomy? Leave us a comment on social networks and remember that you can find our products at any Walmart, Superama, Bodega Aurrera, H-E-B, laComer, CityClub and Alsuper.