There is no doubt that when you hear the words “Mexican food”, the trifecta of images of tacos, burritos, and quesadillas come to mind. But it may surprise many that these are not exactly the best representation of the cuisine. Some are also a result of American adoption and interpretation.
Pico de gallo, for example, is seemingly a staple of the cuisine, but is actually uncommon in Mexico. The ubiquitous corn chips seen as an appetizer in America is far from popular south of the border. Ceviche is another example of a food believed to hail from our neighbors south of the border, when in reality it originated in South America with contributions from Costa Rica, Peru, Ecuador, and Colombia.
The common choice of protein for Mexican food in the United States may be between beef and chicken, but the latter isn’t even an option in its homeland. It is only used for stews, soups, and tamales and is considered an insult to consume it in the form of a taco.
Finally, to clear one last perception, Mexican food is not cheap. This may have been fueled and reinforced with the widespread presence of fast food chains. However, due to the need for an assortment of fresh ingredients to make the best possible food, it is hardly a cheap meal in Mexico.
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