Menudo across Mexico
I am fascinated by this soup; for me, nothing is more craving enducing than Menudo. There is not much I could find on the net in regards to regionality and different ingredients/interpretations of the tripe stew but I found a good book near the border.
Cocina Tradicional mexicana: Platillos para chuparse los dedos by Blanca Nieto lists 4.
Under 'Nuevo Leon' we have:
Menudo de la Frontera.
Pozole corn, tripe, veal hooves, ancho chiles, tomatoes, garlic, salt and oregano.
'San Luis Potosi'
Cafe de Hueso:
Tripe, lamb feet, onions, lard, carrots, garbanzos, anchos, garlic, limes, pequin, cumin, & bread.
"De la tradiccion Mexicana"
Tripe, beef feet, garbanzos, cabbage, plantain, chorizos, garlic, ancho, olives, capers, oregano, "chiles curados," "especia fina"
There is also a Pancita Rellena recipe - Mexican haggis!
From my Sonoran friend: a sofrito of onions, several different kinds of comal-roasted and ground dried and fresh chiles, roasted garlic, ground cumin, and ground coriander; this "fried" in oil until the chiles and spices smell "cooked".. then added: tripe (flannel, not honeycomb), pig feet, pig skin, this simmered for hours then served "sin grana".. without hominy.. with lime juice, cilantro, chile flakes, dried Mexican oregano, and corn tortillas torn into bits and dropped into the menudo. This turns into gelatin when cool. Sucking on, then spitting out the dainty little pig-foot bones is an added bonus.
You probably know my interpretation.... Mexico is woefully under documented... that Wikipedie article is very shallow and just covers what is obvious... you will be surprised to know that such an ubiquitous tradition as Menudo / Mondongo doesn't seem to garner much attention from Mexico's food writers... so already you have probably consolidated more information on Menudo variations then has ever been done before!
Yucatan.... Mondongo with Sour Orange Juice, Mint & Roasted Chile Blanco, "white broth"
Highland Jalisco... Beef Hooves, Chile de Arbol, Fresh Mexican Oregano, Thyme, Marjoram, Garlic,
I wonder why menudo seems not to garner any writing. I am super interested in the origins - such as the first mention in print of a menudo- like dish. Many talk of it originating with the campesinos when meat went straight to the army - but it must be much earlier than that.
The yucateco version is compelling - i wonder if any of SF yucatec restaurants make it in that style? Didnt Kennedy have a recipe for it somewhere?
I had lunch with a Oaxaquena friend today and she descibed the menudo in her state to be quite different and much more picoso.
The Menuderia's cooks are puro sinaloesa - I think this is why the white must be offered.
Any regional preferential for beef vs. pig pata that you know of? Why do ther prefer pancita sin grano in southern regions?
Are there different chiles used regionally?
My guess is that people have been eating stomach and feet ever since they had vessels that could handle the long cooking. In pre-modern times, no part of the butchered animal (whether farm raised or wild) was left to waste. The common Spanish term for a tripe stew is 'callos' a word which gets traced back to Latin.
As to the preference of cow v pigs foot, that may fit with a general preference and availability of the respective animals. North Mexico with more open country ranching, leans toward the cows foot. I remember someone living on the border expressing a preference for cow, but also commenting on how it difficult it was to find that on the US side (this was 20 yrs ago).
Incidentally, mondongo (as Sam noted, the other name for menudo) in Ecuador is a straight cows foot soup - finished in typical Ecuadorian fashion with milk and ground peanuts. I don't recall off hand what the Ecuadorian tripe soups and stews are called. I use the plural because there is no reason a country or region has to have just one preparation.
paulj, well written! I taught "Chic & Chong" 30 years ago in a "Zero hour" history class in the South Valley (poor Hispanic, but very old). As an eastern kid in a very cool new environment, Albuquerque, I guess I overdid it a bit at Okie Joe's Bar (saw Tones Van Zandt et al). All of which lead me to stop at Rosa's on S. 4th Street for "The Menudo Cure" with shocking frequency. Then I moved to Scandinaviaand no more menudo. Eventually I moved to Bolivia and discovered the Ecuadorian style mondrongo in the market place too. I feel lucky that now, living in Northern Maine, that 5 mi away we have a good little Mexican Restaurant (that's the name) run by Guatamalans that makes an excellent bowl of menudo, which I know thouroughly enjoy sober, usually. But thanks to this thread I gotta make some on our wood stove(free heat).
Kennedy in 'My Mexico' has Pancita en Mode recipe (tripe in mole), taken from an old Mexican cookbook.
In sum the recipe calls for cooking tripe and chickpeas separately.
A simple mole, or chile puree, is made from mulato chiles, garlic, salt, and pepper. The puree is fried for a bit (8 minutes) in lard, and then the chickpeas, tripe, and broth are added, and cooked till blended.
Her Regional Cooks book has Mondongo en Kabik from Merida, Yucatan. Cleaned tripe and a calf's foot are cooked for 4 hrs. The next day the meat is reheated and cooked till tender (if needed). A broth is made with tomato, onion, green pepper, epazote, hot green chiles and Recado Rojo, plus the meat broth. Broth and meat are served separately along with bread, and garnishes of onion, chiles and lime slices.
A magazine I bought in Mexico called Escuela de Sabores: Prepare Paso a Paso Pancita
has the transcribed entry for 'menudo' from Ricardo Munoz Zurita's Enciclopedio.
Here's my translation of the primer points:
> In the northern states it is refered as 'menudo,' in the center of the country: pancita and in the south, 'mondongo'
> In some instances the dish can be very brothy, others almost dry.
> Callos a la madrilena is looked to as the origen of menudo.
Typical for dinner, prepared with beef hooves and panza with pozole, mint and coriander seeds. Served with lime and chopped onion
Same as above except chile colorado is used and oregano is offered at serving
A white stew panza and pozole
Panza marinated in lime juice, condimented by saffron, rehydrated ground rice, whole green chiles
Tomato-chile guajillo-garlic base
-Estado de Mexico-
typically eaten sundays. Not always beef tripe but sometimes lamb tripe. The soup includes chile pasilla and chilaca, garlic and epazote.
In Leon, very famous, fried tripe with sweet spices, onion, orange juice, red wine, olives, capers, raisins, almonds and oregano.
Ancho, guajillo, cinnamon, garlic, onion based sauce. Xonocostles and epazote are added.
Famous quesadillas of tripe with qf and stuffed with liver and stomach of lamb stew.
Veal hooves are used. Tomato based broth. Arbol salsa served alongside. San Juan de Dios Market is very famous for its menudo fondas. Reccomended with a glass of cold tejuino.
Chile ancho based
Hierbas de olor used. Accompanied by a miltomate or pasilla salsa.
Simple stew, laurel main flavoring.
Near dry, garbanzos, carrots, potato. Ancho-epazote based. Served with chile amaxito
Known for chile ancho base with pronounced cumin flavoring
Ham, garbanzos, vinagre, chorizo platano, cumin and chile ancho.
Kabic, librillo is prefered