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Old 07-20-2007, 06:03 PM   #1
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Exclamation Is it real, or is it Tex-Mex?

Is it real, or is it Tex-Mex?
Mexico wants the world to know what food is authentic
By OLGA R. RODRIGUEZ
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

MEXICO CITY -- Worried by the global proliferation of deep fat-fried chimichangas, fajitas, margaritas and fried ice cream, the Mexican government is recruiting U.S. and Canadian restaurateurs to set the world straight on what is real Mexican food.

Read the full article here:
Is it real, or is it Tex-Mex?

(Lugaru has long been annoyed that people strive to eat "authentic" ethnic food but are willing to douse tortilla shells in sour cream and call it Mexican, about as much of a crime as manifest destiny was).

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Old 07-20-2007, 06:45 PM   #2
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Thanks for posting the article Lugaro, I enjoyed it. Do you have any pig feet recipes to share? About your comment at the end.

(skilletlicker finds it a tad hyperbolic)
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Old 07-20-2007, 07:10 PM   #3
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Great article! It seems that Mexican food is one cuisines that is most confused in the US. Italian and Chinese are up there too, but I think Mexican probably takes the cake.
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Old 07-20-2007, 07:20 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
...I think Mexican probably takes the cake.
Cake? What cake? There was no cake. It was fried ice cream. Didn't you read the article?


ETA: Americans know what real Mexican cuisine is all about. This Carlos Gonzalez character obviously never watched Rick Bayless on PBS
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Old 07-20-2007, 07:35 PM   #5
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Finaly! It hurts to watch what people eat as "Mexican" here. Including my S(on)IL, whose favorite place is Chili's and he thinks he is eating good authentic Mexican food.
I'm lucky to know some great Mexican cooks and have learned a lot from them.
Boy, was SIL shocked when I cooked only REAL Mexican for a b'day party!
He loved all of it and didn't recognize any of the dishes (no wonder)
I truely love and appreciate Mexican food. In my opinion it is one of the tastiest cuisines, with deep, complex flavors, that you get none of in the usual Mex restaurants.
It upsets me, because the same (no, a lot worse) is happening with my native cuisine.
As I always say, don't mind if ppl twist the original dishes around, just don't call them what they are not anymore!

Yes GB is right, same is happening with Chinese food too (and many others I'm sure).
Can't eat in regular Chinese restaurants, but LOVE the food in Chinatown in SF!!
Don't even care to know what I'm eating (many times I don't), everything is great and very different from the usual offerings.
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Old 07-20-2007, 08:46 PM   #6
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Depends on where you live TexMex is what it says a version of mexican and Texan,California Mex I think they started the sour cream thing,Arizona also has its own version, here in New Mexico its different in different parts of the state then there is Northern New Mexico food which is different but my favorite because of the green and red chile grown here.But to me if you say authentic Mexican would mean to me Old Mexico and I think some places try to adapt to where they start as authentic mexican to draw business because if it doesnt sound somewhat familiar people wont go there.Also in Old Mexico food is regional so what you had in one part of the country will be totally different in another part no different than any other country in the world.
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Old 07-20-2007, 09:05 PM   #7
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Taco Bell is not Tex-Mex

I'm going to be accused again of irrelevant historical perspective but I'll risk it and share a few thoughts anyway.

Mexican culture and cuisine is regional, not monolithic. I would love to see a cooking show that discusses and demonstrates this like Molto Mario does for Italian. Rick Bayless does some it now.

The Tejas region and the Tejano culture predates Mexican independence from Spain. That culture didn't die with the with Mexican independence, Texan independence or the Mexican American War. Tejano cooking existed long before Taco Bell or the first Mexican restaurant in Boston and that is what should properly be called Tex-Mex whether a dish was first named in Eagle Pass, Texas or across the river in Piedras Negras, part of Coahuila, Mexico. To some extent this continuation of Mexican culture inside the US is true from Texas to California and north clear to Wyoming.
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Old 07-20-2007, 09:10 PM   #8
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Having spent a lot of time in new Mexico (and Arizona) I must admit you find a lot of things on the menu there which are very similar to Mexican cooking, although the spice is usually off the charts.

Btw if anybody is in Boston I cannot recomend Tu y Yo enough, authentic food all the way down to crickets (cruncy!). There's a review on my site.

And about taking the cake... I might track down a "pastel de las tres leches" recipe for the forum. A very moist cake with a cup of condense milk, one of half and half and one of... sweetened I think? Gotta go dig for it.
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Old 07-20-2007, 11:17 PM   #9
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Anthony Bordaine does a show on Mexico on his No Reservations program. It is quite good.

The CIA in Hyde PArk has been given a grant to establish a campus in San Antonio specializing in Latino cuisines. Quite an opportunity.

I think we will see Latin American Cuisines and African cuisines establish themselves strongly in the next decade.

However, the average eater is not interested in authentic cuisine, but in quick and easy and what's familiar. For better or worse, both elements will co-exist well into the fututre.
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Old 07-21-2007, 09:22 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robo410

the average eater is not interested in authentic cuisine, but in quick and easy and what's familiar.
I only think the second half of that statement is correct. I further think that if authentic cuisine was familiar to them then they would be just as interested as they are in non-authentic cuisine (with some exceptions). The majority of people only eat what they eat because it is available and easy to access. If authentic places popped up and were easy to get to them more people would be into them.
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