Skip to comments.Taco USA (An Amusing History of Mexican Food in the United States)
Posted on 05/16/2012 2:34:51 PM PDT by mojito
....There is nothing remotely Mexican about Potato Olésnot even the quasi-Spanish name, which has a distinctly Castilian accent. The burrito was more insulting to me and my heritage than casting Charlton Heston as the swarthy Mexican hero in Touch of Evil. But it was intriguing enough to take back to my hotel room for a taste. There, as I experienced all of the concoctions gooey, filling glory while chilly rain fell outside, it struck me: Mexican food has become a better culinary metaphor for America than the melting pot.
Back home, my friends did not believe that a tater tot burrito could exist. When I showed them proof online, out came jeremiads about inauthenticity, about how I was a traitor for patronizing a Mexican chain that got its start in Wyoming, about how the avaricious gabachos had once again usurped our holy cuisine and corrupted it to fit their crude palates.
In defending that tortilla-swaddled abomination, I unknowingly joined a long, proud lineage of food heretics and lawbreakers who have been developing, adapting, and popularizing Mexican food in El Norte since before the Civil War. Tortillas and tamales have long left behind the moorings of immigrant culture and fully infiltrated every level of the American food pyramid, from state dinners at the White House to your local 7-Eleven. Decades worth of attempted restrictions by governments, academics, and other self-appointed custodians of purity have only made the strain stronger and more resilient. The result is a market-driven mongrel cuisine every bit as delicious and all-American as the German classics we appropriated from Frankfurt and Hamburg.
(Excerpt) Read more at reason.com ...
Chili on spaghetti is a Cincinnati thing. Never saw the point myself.
However, since I don't usually have pork stock on hand, I'll probably use beer instead, maybe something like Negro Modelo, so I can drink while I cook.
Of course, even though I'm stealing the recipe, I'd still give you credit: I'll call it “Gone Galt Chili.”
I can attest to that. Love me some El Pollo Loco. I also used to be nuts about Alcapulco, and too many hole-in-the-walls to count. I've been in Texas nearly seven years now, and still haven't found anything to replace the Mexican restaurants I loved in L.A.
I should make my own chili powder, but I don’t.
Your method w/the spices sounds better than mine. How long do you heat the chili powder and cumin....what tells you it is time to add the lard? Lard does add a lusciousness (is that a word?). A smoky fire sounds great, but I normally cook on a stove top, although I use chipotles in adobo for a smokey tone. I wonder if putting a cast iron pot on the grill with soaked wood chips for smoke and the grill cover down would work? I’d need a slow fire and have to watch them and stir a lot. Fire roasted tomatoes instead of tomato sauce would be interesting. Do you do your own from fresh tomatoes or do you use jarred? I usually find the tomato sauce needs to be made more complex, anyway.
A friend uses Scotch to deglaze the pan before adding the gravy ingredients and doesn’t add beans. Not a Scotch drinker, so I didn’t repeat that one, as the flavor didn’t appeal. We like chili beans (red beans simmered in coffee/chili powder and cayenne, then drained)with the meat (beef). Haven’t ever made it with pork. But yes: con carne!
Tried Wolf brand. Once.
Chili on spaghetti is the kind of thing a young chow hound would eat at his apartment for bachelor food and it is adequate in that sense, but it sure isn’t restaurant fair or something for a guest.
I do get a kick out of my wife though on which “way” is the best, and the order that the ingredients go on top of the spaghetti!
What if the spaghetti is made from corn flour?
Or the chili could be made like my Chicago friend did once here in California, Tomatoes, bell peppers and ending up with what I swore was spaghetti sauce with a slight bite, and that he swore was chili where he was from.
I have had Tex Mex, as well as Arizona style, but I think SoCal authentic places have better flavors and ingredients.
As to the difference, between “Americanized” and authentic Mexican...you don’t get much more authentic than eating in East LA.
I’ve been to Mexico, but prefer their food up here in the states better.
I just call that Tater Tot Casserole. I make it with beef or chicken. Sometimes I make my own sauce rather than use canned soup. It’s delicious and the kids love it.
Tater Tot Casserole.
My Wife makes that quite often.
Even though I haven't sampled enough Mexican food in Texas to rate myself as any sort of expert, I have a feeling that that's true. I just don't see lot of Americans frequenting the Mexican food establishments here, which tells me all I need to know. In L.A., you always saw more gringos in the Mexican restaurants than Mexicans.
Don't remind me about East L.A. I get hungry just thinking about it. Do you know, we don't even have Mexican roach coaches out here?
We Texans just don’t really do casseroles, more’s the pity, I suppose because we don’t like using our ovens except in the dead of what winter we have.
And if we do, it’s more likely a shepherd’s pie with mashed potato topping, or a King Ranch chicken casserole topped with corn tortillas and cheese. Or tuna tetrazzini with spaghetti.
We should set about to construct an authentic TX casserole.
Masa is a corn flour. It’s crumbly when made right. Some add corn kernels but I don’t like that kind.
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