Loving Mexican Food Spices

By: Annie Dubois

When you think of delicious cuisine, if you happen to enjoy great Mexican food, spices are definitely going to be a part of your meal. A good spice, by today's standards, is often a spice that is dried and put into a can. Purchasable at your local grocer, that spice is going to offer a flavor similar to the fresh and authentic taste you would expect. In fact, many people simply do not know what it is to have the fresh and authentic taste of some of the most delicious flavors in the world.

There are many Mexican food spices available today. The most common are probably chili powder, cumin, and oregano. However, there are many other types of spice available with a long range of benefits and tastes.

Oregano grown and harvested in Mexico is absolutely divine. This earthy spice adds its earthiness to any meal. Many people may be familiar with Mediterranean oregano which adds immense flavor to Italian cuisine, but the oregano from Mexico is in a class all of its own and no less appreciated.

Cumin just happens to be one of those herbs that have been around since the beginning of time. The origin is believed to be in the middle east, but the reality is no one can know for sure. The bitter taste adds a toasty flavor popular when it comes to cuisine from Mexico. Cumin is an extremely hearty herb with just a little bit going a long way!

Everyone has heard of chili powder, and this is a blended mix often considered a staple when it comes to Mexican food spices. This blend of oregano, cumin, and chilies can be added to just about anything offering a spicy taste of perfection. Most often, chili powder is used to spice up meat, but many families love this flavor on vegetables too.

Another spice similar to chili powder would be Chipotle. What is chipotle? Chipotle is a dried jalapeno that has also been smoked to perfection. Chipotle is definitely popular, and you will find this spice goes great in many salsas and sauces. Also, chipotle is a primary spice found in the marinade Adobo.

Of course, not all Mexican food spices are as well recognized as chipotle, chili powder, cumin, or oregano!

Epazote is an authentic spice form Mexico that should be used sparingly. In large enough quantities, epazote can be poisonous. However, epazote is also used to flavor beans and it will also calm the intestinal side effects of a large dose of delicious beans.

A few other flavors you may find appealing for your next meal could be anise, cinnamon, cocoa, and/or cloves. These spicy and sweet ingredients are not delicious, but they are filled with the healthy things you and your family will appreciate.

Choosing to eat the best in authentic Tex-Mex or Mexican cuisine will often lead you face to face with some of the spices and herbs you see here. However, because this is such a diverse culture, the truth is that you will find much more. Eating good starts with knowing what herbs and spices are most beneficial to your taste buds as well as your overall health.

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