Mexican Desserts – The Joys of Discovering Authentic Mexican Food

For those of us who love Mexican food and yet get confused whether we really know the taste of “authentic” Mexican food, the situation could be a bit tricky. Because the term “authentic” Mexican food menu mostly means that the spices used in flavoring the dish are authentic to Mexico (though the methods used and even the ingredients themselves may not be as genuine as they claim). In fact, real “authentic Mexican food” refers to dishes that have traditionally been prepared in Mexico for the last 50 or more years. If we wish to connect to the original food eaten by the Aztecs/ Mayans and what is consumed even now in Mexico following the same ancient culinary tradition, we need to discover a little about the food choices of those old people, the ingredients they used and their culinary methods and skills. That would not only add to our knowledge what a true Mexican food is, but also would lead us to the places that actually serve “authentic” Mexican food traditionally prepared following the same methods and the ingredients. The present article will deal with traditional Mexican desserts. Mexican food desserts originate from the early Spanish recipes that are made using native Mexican cooking methods and tools.

The Most Popular Mexican Desserts Menu

Flan

The name comes from the Old French word, “flaon” or the Late Latin word, “fladon”, which is derived from the Old High German word “flado,” which means a flat cake or object. Flan in fact is a caramel custard. This dessert is a creamy custard with soft caramel on top. The custard is usually flavored with vanilla. Other varieties are also available, such as lemon, coconut, or other fruits flavored. The history of Mexican flan dates back to ancient Romans who brought it to Europe. Back then, most versions of the dessert were savory rather than sweet. A few early recorded recipes contained the only sweetener- the honey. The Spanish were particularly taken with it (and were the first to top it with a sweet caramel sauce). The Spaniards brought flan to Mexico in 1518. The Mexicans took flan to a whole new level. They created coffee, chocolate, and even coconut flavors and the recipes became popular not only in Mexico but also the rest of Latin America.

Empanadas

Another dessert popular in Mexico. It is a stuffed pastry that contains different sweetened fillings. Other stuffings that could be found in a Mexican restaurant are cream, pumpkin, and a variety of fruits. In some states in Mexico, the empanadas are filled with different meats. Empanadas can be served as a dessert and also a breakfast food.

Chocolate and Champurrado

Chocolate has been used in Mexico for many centuries. The Mayans first used chocolate and then Aztecs continued to use it. During the time of the Aztecs, cocoa was mainly used as a beverage. Wines and drinks were made from white pulp around the seeds of the cocoa pod. Vanilla and/or Chilli were also used as an ingredient in the drinks. The beans themselves were used to make hot or cold chocolate drinks. Both the Maya and the Aztec used roasted cocoa beans, a foaming agent (sugir), toasted corn and water. The Aztecs used chocolate or cocoa beans as both a currency and food. The Aztecs introduced chocolate to the Spanish who took it back to Spain with them. Chocolate became the main ingredient of favorite drink. There were different chocolate-based drinks the Aztecs favored. They often added seeds, nuts or honey to their concoctions. Champurrado is a well-loved warm and thick chocolate drink. It is usually served at breakfast time, perhaps with churros, and also as a dessert. Mexicans often buy this champurrado from street vendors in the morning.

Cajeta or Crema de cajeta, Dulce de leche (meaning sweet milk) or Leche quemada (meaning burnt milk)

The main ingredient in cajeta is caramelized milk which is cooked to make a thick liquid. It can be cow’s milk or goat’s milk. Cajeta can be enjoyed alone, on pastries, ice cream or as a topping for grilled bananas. XOC, an authentic Mexican restaurant at Woodland Hills is famous for its delicious chocolate lava cake created following the original Mexican recipe and served hot a la mode with delicious vanilla ice cream. Other Mexican desserts menu at XOC includes the classic flan, crepas con cajeta, tres leches, and a hearty dessert platter of crepes, churros, and flan. All are homemade, delicious and authentic.