During the weeks around the Day of the Dead (All Saints and All Souls), celebrated on November 1 and 2, this traditional round loaf is baked and decorated with pieces of dough formed into tears or bones. It is one the many foods placed in the colorful offering for the dead, along with chocolate and vivid yellow marigolds.
Rice is served often in Mexican homes. It ranges from plain white rice to more elaborate dishes like this one that can be a meal in itself. The area around Morelos in central Mexico produces a rice that is favoured by good cooks, since it has a large, fat grain that gives an excellent result in casseroles. Processed, quick-cooking brands should never be used in Mexican cooking.
This dish, resplendent with the red, white and green colors of the Mexican flag, was created by the imaginative Augustine nuns of Puebla for a visit by Mexico´s very own emperor, Don Augustín de Iturbide, who, after the War of Independence, lasted a mere eleven months in office. It is featured as a main.
Dish during August and September, when the new crop of walnuts is available. Although this dish appears complicated, the sauce and filling are best prepared the day before, and the chiles can be stuffed several hours in advance.
Pasta arrived in Mexico during the thirty years of Porfirio Diaz's presidency, with its emphasis on grand continental cuisine. This recipe calls for fideos, or vermicelli, but almost any soup pasta can be used, even stars, wheels or alphabet types. The trick is to have the noodle acquire the proper light-brown color without getting too dark and bitter tasting.
Vegetable fritters are a popular way of preparing vegetables in Mexico, particularly during Lent. They also accompany simple chicken and fish dishes such as huachinango a la talla. These potato patties can be served with a fesh salsa mexicana or a cooked salsa.
In some parts of Sonora, potato chunks are added to this typical regional soup. If queso Chihuahua is not available, use Monterey Jack or a medium-sharp Cheddar.
1 chile poblano
1 green bell pepper (capsicum)
3 tablespoons (1 1/2 oz/45 g) butter
A typical dish for “almuerzo” (a late breakfast), “enfrijoladas” can be livened up by serving pickled jalapeños on the side. While the type and color of the bean that is used varies from region to region, it is the ebony-hued frijol negro (black bean) that is most typical of this dish.
When a dish is referred to as a la mexicana, it is made with tomatoes, onions and chiles, combined here with the plentiful shrimp from the coastal waters of Mexico.
2 tablespoons oil
3/4 cup (6 oz/185 g) finely chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, minced
Caesar salad has had a following ever since the late 1920s, when it was created by two Italian brothers, Alex and Caesar Cardini, in their Tijuana restaurant. It is now featured in many restaurants worldwide, although few versions bear a close resemblance to the original.
This casserole of meat, tortillas and tomates verdes is very popular among Americans living in Mexico City and is excellent with "ensalada mixta con aderezo de aguacate".
3 cloves garlic
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 whole clove
This special meat loaf was presented at a culinary festival of Mexican cooking in 1975. On slicing, the red and green strips of chile make a colorful presentation.
1 bolillo (hard bread roll), sliced and soaked in milk
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon dried oregano