Mexico’s Cuisine is the focus of research and study for many, even by the National Institute of Anthropology and History. The reason behind this is because it consists of artisanal and exquisite fusions of ingredients, which have been adapted through time, dating back to pre-Hispanic times; this has made Mexico’s Gastronomy an Intangible Heritage for Humanity.
Specifically speaking of a marvelous state in the nation located in the South East of Mexico, Veracruz, there is a lot to be said! Typical and traditional gastronomy from Veracruz is a marvelous blend of scents and flavors, which are the direct reflection of its flora and fauna… They are also the product of a mixture of cultures, from indigenous with some African roots, and the Spaniards. For example, in the Sotavento area, this fusion is kept alive, and can be seen in traditional recipes and dishes consumed today, like the stone tamal, beans with fried banana, or turtle moste style.
He also mentioned that in the south of Veracruz, one can find a very different kind of cuisine. This is because the popoluca civilization from the Soteapan mountain range, would base their daily food intake on resources found in the jungle; while the nahuas from the Papajan region elaborated dishes from fruits of the ocean, rivers and coasts. The region of the Tuxtlas, Chacalapan and San Juan Evangelista there is a vast African and crossbreed influence with zapoteca, which certainly distinguishes them from the rest of the area!
Some of the dishes that we can today enjoy (deriving from the region’s ancestral lifestyles) are the “mogo mogo”, which is mashed up banana with cheese (feta) on top, or pork’s skin; beans with blue crab; and cowboy mole, which is a dish from the Chacalapan region, with African roots, made with smoked beef.
As time has passed, several traditions have died; nonetheless there are some that are kept alive today (which is fascinating!). For instance, local residents today, still ask permission to the Chaneque (the spirit of nature and guardian of the waters) so they can hunt and fish animals from the jungle or ocean, so they can use them and feed on them later. If this isn’t carried out, legend has it that they will suffer bad fortune for some time.
As you can see, Veracruz is an entire experience on its own! Discover and enjoy it!