1935 film - Chrysler

Touring Mexico by car in 1935

While paintings interpret reality, film and photography give us a vivid look at the past. What was Mexico like in 1935? The Revolution over, Lazaro Cardenas was president. Feelings of nationalism ran high and would make possible the expropriation of Mexico’s vast oil reserves in 1938. Movies focused on social themes and historical events along with the melodramas […]

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Potato, onion, garlic and eggs are essential for tortitas de papa. © Daniel Wheeler, 2010

Did You Know? A fungus from Mexico and the Irish potato famine

There wouldn’t be many Irish people in the United States if it wasn’t for a Mexican fungus. The census of 1841 in Ireland recorded a population of about 8 million. This figure was a staggering 300% more than sixty years earlier. The staple Irish food at that time was the humble potato and Ireland’s rapid […]

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Did you know? Dinosaur bones in Mexico

Thousands of dinosaur bones have been found in northern Mexico. Bones literally litter the ground. Here’s a femur; there’s a tibia; vertebrae, ribs, skulls… Dozens of dinosaurs, including the world’s cheapest, have been unearthed in a broad belt across northern Mexico, from Baja California and Sonora in the west, through Chihuahua, and Coahuila to Nuevo […]

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Immigrant Cooking In Mexico – Part Two: The Italians of Chipilo

The previous column on immigrant cooking in Mexico dealt with the Mennonites of Chihuahua, a group that brought Northern and Eastern European culinary traditions to their new country. A far different cuisine came with the Italians, who largely migrated during the Porfiriato, in the last part of the 19th century. The great wave of migration from Europe during the […]

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The Humble Peanut Stars in Mexican Cuisine: Los Cacahuates

Many years ago, two young students of mine in California went on a family trip to visit their grandparents in Mexico. When they returned, they couldn’t wait to tell me the funniest word they’d heard: “cacahuates.” Those four catchy syllables really made an impression on them, possibly because of the incessant cry of the peanut vendor at […]

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Hot chocolate from Coatepec, Veracruz, decorated with a star made of cocoa powder © Karen Hursh Graber, 2014

About Chocolate

Chocolate comes from roasting and processing the bean which grows on the cocoa tree. The cocoa tree is harvested in the rain forests of the tropics, notably in Mexico, Brazil, and Ghana. Our global community owes chocolate to none less than the Aztecs, who populated what is now Mexico. In fact, the word chocolate comes […]

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Seasonal Dining: Mexican Wild Game – Part Two: Rabbit and Venison

As discussed in last month’s column, wild game played an important culinary role in pre-Hispanic Mexico. Although the Aztecs, Maya and other Mesoamerican people relied on corn as the staple food, along with a wide variety of fruit and vegetables, the carbohydrate-rich diet was supplemented by animal protein. The Aztecs had only five domesticated animals, […]

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