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What is Mexican Cuisine To You?

Related to the thread where the Aussie Mex-Food virgin was trying to get an understanding of the cuisine... I would love everyone's thoughts on what Mexican cusine mean to you? What is its raison d'etre in your life?

I would expect that for most people its a festive, colorful, assertively flavored, fun cuisine. To me sure there is a festive component that is very important... but that is the exception... the weekend fiesta at a friend's home, the town's annual 2 week fiesta... to me its mostly Central Mexico... its the daily meals at home, it is the true traditions... those that predate industrialization.

Its going to the mercado everyday for fresh ingredients, and using chiles, herbs, tomatoes, tomatillos and a sparse amount of meat to flavor vegetables & legumes... its respecting the ancient balance of cold & hot foods, raw & cooked in every meal. Its the cuisine where eating 10 servings of fruits, vegetables & legumes every day is effortless and delicious. Its embodied by classics like Pozole with a little bit of meat, hominy & dried chiles to flavor the broth that will absorb piles of raw, crunchy vegetables... and your basic millenary peasant meal of clay pot beans with greens, handmade corn tortillas, spicy salsas washed down with a clay mug full of nourishing amaranth, corn & chile atole.

I know we all have different ideas of what it is to you?

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  1. My favorite and what I usually crave is Tex-Mex, because I live in Texas...I have tried all of the different Mexican foods, and I like them all, but Tex-Mex rules...That involves enchiladas, refried beans (usually the best are fried in lard!...didn't say it was healthy...), rice, guacamole, chips, salsa, queso, and homemade corn and flour tortillas...along with great Margaritas....For dessert, flan or mexican pecan pralines....

    31 Replies
    1. re: jinet12

      Question... what is Queso to you? I always thought in Texas it would mean Queso Fundido... basically melted Chihuahua (similar to Muenster) or Oaxaca (similar to Mozzarella) cheeses spiked with a little something... Chorizo, Mushrooms, Chipotles in Adobo or Poblano strips. But another CH insists it means nacho cheese.

      Could you please clarify? Gracias.

      1. re: Eat_Nopal

        I do love Queso Fundido, but no...Queso is usually a mixture of cheese, with, I think probably some Velvetta or "nacho" cheese as well...This, believe it or not, is important for melting and texture reasons...My favorite is always the spicy one, which also has onions and jalapenos in it...Sometimes if it is not spicy enough, we put some of our salsa in it....

        1. re: jinet12

          Do people use the canned / processed stuff... or do they make from scratch vis-a-vis combining cheddar cheese with cream cheese & salsa etc.,?

          1. re: Eat_Nopal

            I think that most people use "Velvetta" cheese...But when you combine it with other cheeses, it really does not taste like Velvetta, but adds the melting cheese that is needed for a smooth queso

        2. re: Eat_Nopal

          Queso IS cheese. That's what the word means! So...as with fromage...queso has many permutations.

          1. re: Alice Letseat

            Thank you.

            I felt for a minute like I was in the twighlight zone. Queso is Cheese. Period. Now let's go ahead and talk about the different spins put on it...

            1. re: tiamarty

              Queso means cheese, but in most Mexican restaurants in the States it's that melted gooey mess made with Velveta.

              Also, what is that the difference between Tex-Mex and authentic Mexican food? From my limited experience the restaurants that cater to the American taste use cheddar or Monteray Jack cheeses and the ones I call authentic that cater to Mexican imigrants use queso fresca (sorry about spelling). What other differences are there?

              1. re: jackrugby

                There are so many differences but the basic ones are:

                > Flavoring Schemes.... Tex-Mex usually relies on "Taco Seasoning" and other spice mixes + simplistic techniques like just liberally seasoning meats or vegetables with the crude spice mix... these are rarely used south of the border.

                Mexican cuisine usually involves a laborious process of roasting chiles, garlic, tomatoes / tomatillos, and mixing with herbs.. a modest amount of spices and other ingredients to come up with complex pastes, sauces, marinades etc., to provide assertive but elegantly constructed flavors.

                Tex-Mex also tends to involve other short cuts like canned tomatoes etc., Further Tex-Mex seems firmly grounded in the 1950's ideals of proportion, elaboration & science versus art... wheras in Mexico there is much earthier & yet more refined approach. Take for example Enchiladas... in Tex-Mex this usually means a Tortillas heavily stuffed with bland cheese & shredded chicken.. then drowned in a cumin dominated sauce made from canned tomatoes topped with yellow cheese and overcooked in an oven / casserole paired with Tomatoe-Rice & Refried Beans. In Mexico... Enchiladas means freshly sauced tortillas straight from the griddle, folded over with a small amount of cotija or fresco cheese... topped with onions, herbs & crunchy vegetables... maybe a dollop of soothing crema... the flavor pairings are more assertive yet sophisticated, balanced & "real" tasting.... whereas the Tex Mex versions seem rather "fake" & detached from the original ingredients.

                > Menu Choices.... throughout most of Mexico... Mexican restaurants are rather scarce... and by Mexican restaurants I mean those that only serve a narrow range of Classic dishes that became popular and somewhat standardized when travel picked up in the 20th Century. Instead Mexico's restaurants tend to be highly specialized around ingredients & regional techniques... and these types of dishes almost never make it to Tex-Mex menus which seem to evolve around the same usual suspects where ever you go.

                I don't know how many categories of restaurant concepts there are in Mexico... but in Mexico City alone its a couple hundred... everything from neighborhood eateries that specialize in Trout or Mushrooms done 30 different ways, to the Ceviche Bars... to the Nahuatl speaking lady that only makes deep fried quesadillas with fillings like Squash Blossoms, Huitlacoche, Sauteed Agave Worms etc.,

                > Identity.... Tex-Mex seems to be stuck in a place & time... wheras cuisine in Mexico is both closer to pre-hispanic roots, and yet close to modern cutting edge trends. For example, it was in Mexico that Italian Sushi (Crudo / Sashimi Carpaccio) first became popular in the mid 90's not in NYC, Italy or Tokyo (as other people might assume).

                1. re: Eat_Nopal

                  As time goes on, I bet more and more cooks in Mexico will take shortcuts. From what I hear, pre-prepared mole, sold in blocks, is already popular.

                  1. re: Brian S

                    Yes there are short cuts taken there. But there are short cuts & then there are short cuts... usually what they do in Mexico maintains the dish's integrity (for example using Bouillon in a Cooked Salsa instead of Chicken Broth).... wheras in Tex-Mex they completely alter (and in my opinion) depreciate the result.

                    Tex-Mex and Northern Mexican are generally not that different in composition & concept... but there is a huge difference in quality. Its hard to describe but Tex-Mex is consistently "fake" and low quality relative to Northern Mexican.

                    A perfect example is Queso & Nachos. The original Nachos... invented in Chihuahua as an after school snack is more comparable to a Fondue with its homemade chips, a fondue of very decent real Chihuahua / Menonite cheese & sublime pickled jalapenos, onions with strong garlic, bay leaves & Mexican oregano. It may not be adult upscale gourmet food... but for a kid's snack its pretty impressive.

                    Wheras its Tex-Mex counterpart involves canned yellow processed "cheese"... taco seasoned ground beef, whole beans etc., and has an air of cheapness, Taco Bell & trailer park about it.

                    I am too sleep deprived to come up with some fancy, academic terminology but hopefully the image of the related snacks highlights what seems to be the comparison of Tex Mex to Mexican.

                    Now the article's premise of if the French like it, so should we is laughable. These are the same French that in Mexico have refused to eat handmade corn tortillas because that is livestock feed in their country... what the heck do they know?

                2. re: jackrugby

                  One of my favorite food writers is Robb Walsh. A few years ago he wrote a really terrific book about Tex-Mex food. Check it out at your local book store or library. There's a HUGE difference between Tex-Mex and Mexican and I think Robb does a pretty good job at presenting the differences.

                  1. re: DiningDiva

                    A Houston newspaper did a six-part history of Tex-Mex. Here's part one
                    http://www.houstonpress.com/2000-07-2...
                    and here's part two:
                    http://www.houstonpress.com/2000-08-3...

                    1. re: Brian S

                      I got to page 2 of part 1... and had it with all the incorrect information. The article is pretty much worthless.

                      1. re: Eat_Nopal

                        And you know the information is incorrect because???????

                        1. re: DiningDiva

                          Come on... there are no crispy tacos in Mexico? I know what the writer is getting at, but it is just one example of very sloppy assertions.

                          1. re: Eat_Nopal

                            Well, I have eaten tacos dorados in Mexico and Cristina's Fish-Taco-Stand-That-Shall-Remain-Nameless serves crispy tacos de jaiba. The last time I checked she still lived in Guadalajara and that's still a city in Mexico. Are crispy tacos prevalent in Mexico, no, not so much. But they do exist and if you want to get into the whole tacos dorados by extension, it fits the bill.

                            My objection was to the sweeping statement that the article was "worthless" with no other explanation as to why you thought that. It's okay to disagree with the author, or have a differing opinion, but ya gotta back it up with something! Inquiring minds want to know........

                            1. re: DiningDiva

                              Ah... I just saw the very shallow approach to the subject and it reminded of some NY food writer taking a 5 day tour and all of a sudden becoming an "expert" so I just felt a little disgusted by it. Continuing... he states that the Mexican culinary tradition began with Tamal & Prailine vendors in the early 20th century? How about at least a hundred years earlier?

                              1. re: Eat_Nopal

                                I believe he was referring to Texas and since I'm not nearly that old, I wouldn't know ;-).

                                Most Robb Walsh article are pretty well researched, take a look at his book(s) before you completely write him off.

                                1. re: Eat_Nopal

                                  In the article, Robb Walsh is talking solely about Tex-Mex regional cooking in the United States. He does occasionally paint what is and isn't Mexican with a broad brush, but by and large he's correct on the major points.

                                  Tex-Mex is not Mexican food. "Queso" may literally translate to 'cheese', but don't tell that to a Texan. In Tex-Mex lingo, it's something altogether different. Nobody in Mexico ever served a tamal (one is a tamal, two are tamales) with chili gravy. Nachos and fajitas aren't native to Mexico.

                                  But so what? Nobody, including Robb Walsh, is claiming that he's writing anything definitive about Mexican cooking. He's pure Tex-Mex and his articles and his book are excellent. The book opened my eyes to the realities of Tex-Mex, stopped me from thinking of it as a lesser version of 'authentic' Mexican cooking, and made me think twice before sneering at food that thousands upon thousands of people eat every day.

                                  And yes, I still live happily in Guadalajara, where it's easy to buy taquitos (little rolled deep-fried crunchy tacos, of jaiba or chicken or beef) at many a street corner puestecito and at many a fonda.

                                  What's the argument, folks? Eat Nopal started a thread about Mexican cuisine. Why are we even discussing Tex-Mex?

                                  Link: http://mexicocooks.typepad.com

                                  1. re: cristina

                                    Maybe I just can't enjoy Tex-Mex for the perceived baggage it puts on Mexican cusine and the perceived uphill battle I think all of us that love & promote Mexico's culinary tradition wage... but I am not ready to let Tex-Mex off the hook so I easy.... I do see it as an inferior & poorly done shadow of Northern Mexican cuisine. Not that I think Northern Mexican cuisine is the end all of the culinary world, by any stretch of the imagination.

                                    The one thing that I think Texas has inherited from Mexican culinary tradition, protected & maybe even improved is BBQ... but that has just been absorbed into mainstream Texas culture and isn't given the slight treatment of "Otherness" that most Tex-Mex receives.

                                    Other than that I will take Chilorio & Carne en Chile Colorado over Chili, and Queso Fundido over Texas Queso etc.,

                                    Lets put any Mexico baggage aside... I just don't see Tex-Mex being on the same plane as Cajun or some other regional U.S. culinary traditions.

                                    1. re: Eat_Nopal

                                      I have heard from one source that Texas BBQ is German (smoked roasts, I think), and now you say it's a Mexican tradition. Could someone clear this up?

                                      1. re: Leucadian

                                        I don't know the exact origins of Texas BBQ - but I know it was heavily influenced by German immigrants.

                                        1. re: Leucadian

                                          Ah we are back to the tangled web of the origins of U.S. BBQ tradition... first off its a fairly complex subject. This used to be my case for a Mexican origin of BBQ:

                                          1) Mexico has the oldest known Closed Pit Cooking (aka True BBQ) tradition in the world (dating back to pits near the Yucatan about 4,500 years ago).

                                          2) Barbeque is an Anglicized word dervied from Barbacoa, itself a Hispanicized word of Carribbean origin... where the Spaniards first encountered BBQ prior to landing on the Mexican mainland (from which BBQ was likely spread).

                                          3) Texas (and the rest of Northern Mexico) had a BBQ tradition before the first Anglo or German-American ever arrived.

                                          4) A documentary I saw on BBQ revealed that in many Southern places like Missiissiipii, Tennesse & others.... the first known references to BBQ were restaurants in X town opened by African Americans in the Post Emancipation industrialization era... as you go East from Texas it seems that BBQ caught on later & later indicating an Eastward diaspora emanating in Texas

                                          However, in the last year Low Country Jon made a very passionate argument for why North Carolina's BBQ tradition existed before Texas Annexation citing colonial era references to BBQ parties... and provided examples of the close trading & cultural relationship between the Carolinas & the Carribbean during that time. In other words, he made a good case for North Carolina's BBQ tradition being derived from the Carribbean. Which makes sense because the BBQ of the Carribbean whether in the Yucatan, Hispanola or other places mainly used Boar & Fish... as compared to inland Mexico where the preferred meats were red such as Deer, Sheep & Xolocuintles (a particular breed of canine).

                                          I don't know enough about German cuisine to analyze what contributions were made by them... what I do know is that Texas BBQ is fairly similar to what was being done in the Mexican interior.... heavy smoke, closed pit, red meats. The one major difference is that interior Mexico's BBQ almost always involves a steam component as well that Texas BBQ often ignores.

                                          Another thing to note is that Pork was the staple meat in the U.S. prior to annexation... Pork is still the staple meat in Germany.... and most contemporary U.S. cattle breeds still descend from the Angus cattle brought by the Spaniards.

                                          Now one last bit of thought provoking tid bit.... the current article of the National Geographic places a firm 3 sisters agricultural tradition among the Pawtahan tribe (think Pocahontas) at the time of Jamestown's founding. The more I learn about U.S. Native history the more I realize how much trading & cultural exchange was really going on with Mesoamerica. The uncanny Mayanesque of the mound culture up in Illinois (I believe) just speaks of lots of exchange.... perhaps BBQ was part of the exchange.... and the Carribbean term just stuck because things like that happen.

                                          1. re: Eat_Nopal

                                            Hi EN, thanks for the informative response. Is cochinita pibil the proto-BBQ? Pit cooking (pib) doesn't produce much smoke, or does it? I've never had it, but the modern descriptions don't sound like the 'heavy plank' that distressed John Stevens in the 1800's.

                                            1. re: Leucadian

                                              Yes, Pibil is what I was referring to as Yucatecan BBQ. Is it smokey or not? Many modern (lazy) versions are done in the oven... and obviously exclude smoke completely but the real deal does use smoke. Even then its not as heavy on the smoke as say an Hidalgo or Mexico State style Lamb Barbacoa or a Nayarit style Pescado Zarandeado... but there is smoke and I just consider it a different regional style of true BBQ just like the Carolina styles are still true BBQ even if the result isn't particularly smokey.

                                        2. re: Eat_Nopal

                                          EN, let's say you're an Xopytian from Xopytia who landed on Earth and had to eat Tex-Mex, New Mexican, or Cajun. Other Xopytians landing in Cambodia, Philippines, Colombia, Venezuela, Uganda, the UK, Finland, or elsewhere may well be very jealous of you when you all get back to your planet.

                                          1. re: Eat_Nopal

                                            You're right, Tex-Mex may not be on the same plane as cajun or other American regional cuisines...........most Texans and more than a few folks outside those state borders will tell you it's W-A-Y better.

                                            Tex-Mex has baggage, who knew? By whose perception? Certainly not a Texans.

                                            1. re: DiningDiva

                                              Absolutely agree!!! When we go out of the state, we truly enjoy other types of cuisine...BUT...the first thing we do when we come home is to head to the nearest great Tex-Mex restaurants!

                                          2. re: cristina

                                            I think we're discussing Tex-Mex because to many Americans that is what they consider Mexican food. I think Eat_Nopal started a pretty lively discussion and I've learned some things I didn't know.

                                            Not living in the SW (I live in SW Ohio, but that's not the same) my first experience with 'Mexican' food 35 years ago was Taco Bell. I loved it, it was the experience that has led me to explore more authentic Mexican food as it has grown in popularity.

                                            Never having been to Mexico, I still have many questions about Mexican cuisine and look forward to trying it. And this is going to make a lot of you cringe, but I still enjoy Taco Bell when I need a quick fix.

                                  2. re: Eat_Nopal

                                    The reason I liked these articles is that I always assumed that Tex-Mex was invented because the CEO of a big chain told his subordinate, get a committee of marketing experts and dumb down Mexican cuisine so that North Americans will eat it! But that's not true. It was created by the delicate (and at times comic) interplay between immigrants and potential customers, with adaptation due to available ingredients and sometimes chance.

                                    1. re: Brian S

                                      Ah I see what you say... very valid.

                    2. peppers. ancho, jalapeno, habanero, pablano. and fresh flour tortillas.

                      15 Replies
                      1. re: luniz

                        cheese, tortilla, sauce, and your choice of meat

                        1. re: luniz

                          Where in Mexico do they use habanero? (I'm serious, I always thought it was more of a Carribean pepper).

                          To me it has lots to do with cilantro, lime, corn tortillas and mole.

                            1. re: ccbweb

                              Habaneros are used throughout Mexico in small quantities... they are more of a curiosity, exotic product etc., However, they are THE chile of the Yucatan peninsula from Campeche to Chetumal... the Habanero rules.

                              1. re: Eat_Nopal

                                Thanks for the heads up, I didn't know that. Very cool! Or, rather, hot.

                                1. re: ccbweb

                                  I would add that while people in Central Mexico don't consume huge quanitities of Habaneros, they do have the Manzano which is a close cousin of the Habanero and very common in Central Mexico's hot lands:

                                  http://images.google.com/images?q=Chi...

                            2. re: luniz

                              I realize that flour tortillas are more common in some regions in Mexico, notably in the north, than they are in much of the country, but still, to me, freshly made corn tortillas are Mexican, and flour tortillas are Tex-Mex.

                              1. re: susancinsf

                                I agree totally that freshly made corn tortillas mean Mexican to me. But also: carnitas wrapped in those tortillas with some salsa, a little cilantro and onion and a grilled cebollita (green onion) on the side; a torta with a freshly made bolillo; soups, ceviche; those big shrimp cocktails someone mentioned, and last but not least:...quesadillas made from fresh masa hand-formed into thick tortillas with various fillings and deep fried.....A "quesadilla" formed from a pre-made flour tortillas and then grilled to melt the cheese is definitely Tex-Mex....

                                1. re: janetofreno

                                  half of it is the memories: when you say 'tortas' I remember sneaking out of class to head to the torta place and then heading over to Chapultepec...but when I think tacos, it isn't carnitas...it is al pastor. real al pastor, with cebollitos, eaten late at night: why is real al pastor so elusive here in the bay area?

                                  I think it's been too many years for those quesadillas. Yes, they are Mexican food to me also: going to get them every Friday night from the Senora de las quesadillas from her little stand set up on the corner next to the bakery, with her young daughter to help her shape them by hand...But I could swear they were griddled, not deep fried... whatever: not too much grease, hot masa and cheese oozing out...I have promise myself that I will go to the coner on my next trip to DF: I have this fantasy that the daughter will be there making them, or better yet, that she has expanded the bakery and opened a succesful restaurant next door....after all, those quesadillas are deserving of fame and fortune.

                                  As much as I love high end Mexican cuisine, when I think of Mexican food invariably my thoughts return to street stands: quesadillas; fruit with chile and lime in a paper cone, perhaps with a few cucumbers and some jicama as well; elote also with chile and lime; sweets; churros.....

                                  And then there is breakfast. Eaten at an outside table overlooking a zocalo somewhere: chilaquiles, huevos rancheros, perhaps some papaya.....

                                  1. re: susancinsf

                                    Susan you are right about the quesadillas... most people refer to the deep fried ones as Mexico City style... perhaps this is where they were created. However, the griddle version are just as common (and more traditional imho).. in fact in the Southern part of the city... i.e., Xochimilco where there many more native Nahuatl speakers.... I don't remember ever seeing the deep fried type.

                                    1. re: Eat_Nopal

                                      we lived in Condesa....so not in the south of the city, but of course I don't know where La Senora was from, and now that I think about it, she didn't speak much, could be that her Spanish wasn't that great....but hey, after 35 years, who knows who has the better memory, me or Janet (well, she is ten minutes younger after all :-))...all I know for sure is that La Senora used coal to heat the griddle or burner and pan or whatever it was she was cooking those quesadillas in, and that they were the best quesadillas, and one of the best street foods, ever, anywhere!

                                      1. re: susancinsf

                                        You know, you might be right...they might have been griddled. I suffer from a severe case of CRS (can't remember S&*t). But the point is that the tortillas was not a pre-cooked tortilla that was then stuffed....it was masa that was hand-formed, stuffed and THEN cooked. That's the important distinction. And you are absolutely right....When I think of Mexican food I too think of street food. Everything from those quesadillas to the mango paletas.

                                        1. re: janetofreno

                                          How to eat mango paletas: buy a mango paleta and a coconut paleta. take a bite of each in turn... :-)

                                          1. re: janetofreno

                                            Have a few quesadillas in Colonia Roma, México, D.F. Avenida Tlaxcala, a few blocks east of Ave. Insurgentes. Good fillings. Very popular, with longish lines at peak hours.
                                            http://www.pbase.com/panos/image/5404...

                                            1. re: Anonimo

                                              For some reason, I didn't click on this link till I was checking this thread when reporting on the quesadillas estilo DF I had this weekend in LA. These indeed look good, but they aren't the quesadillas of my dreams, since it is pretty clear to me from the pic that that tortillas are made first, then stuffed and griddled. In the style I dream of, the masa and fillings cook at the same time....

                                              Here's my post on the LA version I found this weekend (and what a find it was):

                                              http://www.chowhound.com/topics/40995...

                              2. Mexican food for me is

                                * the exquisitely ripe fruit
                                * soups with intensely flavorful stock bases with deep, deep, flavor
                                * red tomatoes and green tomatillos and chiles in a riot of colors, sizes, shapes and degrees of piquancy
                                * a pot of black beans cooked with epazote
                                * corn tortillas that taste of corn, have a velvety texture and char marks from the comal or grill. Inhaling deeply at the tortilliaria
                                * refreshing nieves in flavors that defy the American imagination
                                * Indio, Victoria, Leon or Montejo beer
                                * Mexican chocolate and cinnamon
                                * eating corundas stuffed with doble crema and rajas, drenched in chile manzano based salsa and crema on a stool in front of the basilica in Patzcuaro
                                * enchiladas placeras, an evening meal
                                * street vendors selling everything from deep fried hot dogs, to syrupy camotes, pan dulce vendors that still make house calls
                                * chorizo that actually has texture and doesn't melt
                                * moles and pipians where the sauce is the star not the protein
                                * remarkably fresh fish even in the landlocked central part of the country, particularly dorado or huachinango
                                * mariscos cocktails to feed an army
                                * pork, pork and more pork
                                * gelatina creations
                                * agua frescas and sidewalk cafes where you can simply sit and watch the local ebb and flow of the local life
                                * nopales
                                * the first taco upon landing in Mexico whch is inevitably al pastor or chorizo
                                * Don Julio straight up, no chaser, no sangrita
                                * meals that last for hours because everyone is talking, laughing and having a good time
                                * guacamole
                                * lime wedges with everything

                                Mexican food defies pigeon-holing by dint of it's sheer diversity. This is part of the allure and charm for me. The flavors run from subtle to bold, mild to strong, I find discover something new with each visit or cooking experiment at home. The one thing Mexican food is not to me, is what is typically served NOB, i.e. overstuffed burritos, mounds of molten yellow cheese, soggy chile rellenos, etc.

                                6 Replies
                                1. re: DiningDiva

                                  Great answer... Although I'm not such a fan of Don Julio, I'm more of a Centinela 3 años kinda guy. I can do without the lime on everything... and fish in the north is... *cringe

                                  About Habaneros (ccbweb): Yucatán Peninsula is the place to go for them.

                                  1. re: cookiejesus

                                    By north I suppose you mean Nuevo Leon & Ciudad Juarez as oppossed to Ensenada and even Torreon (land locked but great Trout, Bass & Catfish) etc.?

                                    1. re: Eat_Nopal

                                      Pretty much thinking about Nuevo León and Saltillo... I have to admit that I totally forgot freshwater fish. Still going to the supermarket makes me stick to shrimp. It's a crime the way they treat their fish... We need some sort of Whole Foods around here.

                                      1. re: cookiejesus

                                        I never even saw fish offered in Monterrey and have never been to Saltillo... what is the deal? I would think that proximity to the Tamaulipas would bring some great Red Snapper no?

                                        You just reminded me of what I saw in the Inca Sacred Valley... unrefrigerated ocean fish just hanging out in outdoors markets, eyeballs completely clouded... people must not get sick however.

                                      2. re: Eat_Nopal

                                        I had some great fish in Valle de Bravo, I typically don't like landlock fish. However, the water is pretty clean in this area and the rainbow trout and black bass dishes I sampled were amazing.

                                    2. It's mostly a Holy Grail I can't even attempt to find or cook here in Canada! It fuels many fantasies of trips to Mexico.

                                      1. US included, or is Amerimex a seperate category?

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: bbqboy

                                          Its whatever you associate with Mexican Cuisine... for some people the distinction doesn't exist...