Mexican food is a part of the pantheon of American food, but many of the foods we know as Mexican are nothing more than Americanized versions of the Mexican original. While taco and burrito joints are a dime a dozen in most cities, if you want real Mexican food, you need to look beyond the ease of ready-to-order food and try to find classics. For example, you could try mole, carne adobada, or tamales.
The word "mole" does not refer in this case to the animal that dig holes in the ground. Instead, it is an ancient Aztec word for sauce. However, the sauces used by the Aztecs were much simpler in their design than modern mole dishes. Chocolate, several different types of chiles, nuts, seeds, and various combinations of spices can be used to create a sauce that can be used to add depth of flavor to a dish. The rich, complex flavor of mole is sure to give depth to any dish that it is integrated into and will give the diner a taste of old Mexico.
There are various ways to flavor meat. In the case of carne adobada, the meet is marinated overnight in a red chile sauce and then slow roasted for six hours. This process creates a dish that has a classic Mexican flavor that cannot be mimicked in the hectic environment of a fast-food restaurant. The meat can be enjoyed on its own, or it can be used as a filling for tacos or burritos.
Tamales begin with a dough made from corn flour. Different fillings such as cheese, beef, or chicken are then placed on the dough. The dough is wrapped inside a corn leaf and boiled to cook. Tamales can take hours to prepare at home, so rather than try to make them on their own, you should look for a good Mexican restaurant, so you can give them a try. They have a simple, hearty flavor that speaks of generations of living close the land.
These are just a few examples of the richness of Mexican cuisine. Rather than just wade through the shallow offerings presented at Mexican-themed fast-food joints, you should delve deeper into Mexican cuisine. As you search for restaurants that serve traditional Mexican dishes (like La Cabana Mexican Restaurant), you will find subtle regional variations that will reward you again and again for your efforts to embrace your adventurous side.