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View Poll Results: What city makes the best Mexican food?
San Diego 46 8.29%
Los Angeles 132 23.78%
Pheonix 19 3.42%
Las Vegas 1 0.18%
Alburqurque 71 12.79%
Dallas 69 12.43%
San Anotonio 83 14.95%
Dallas/Fort Worth 10 1.80%
Houston 45 8.11%
Other 79 14.23%
Voters: 555. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-03-2015, 12:40 PM
 
Location: Milwaukee
3,451 posts, read 3,180,237 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jessemh431 View Post
I also refuse to pay for expensive Mexican food because it's always fake and not as good. The real Mexican way is done with tortilla, meat, cilantro, onion and then you add your own salsa on top and squeeze a lime if you want. That's ubiquitous in LA
You bet - backed 100%.

Also - it doesn't take a yellow, brown, white, black or green person to know that the BEST of any kind of FOOD is not covered in iceburg lettuce, sliced tomatoes and processed American vegetable oi...I mean, "cheese." All it takes is a reasonable palette and some common sense.

And yes, Chicago/Milwaukee both have significant Mexican populations. Chicago is the #2 Mexican city in the entire country, after LA, and Milwaukee is a little echo of Chicago with similar ethnic percentages. I think I know what's trad and what is not. Not just because I'm married into a Mexican (via Spain first, then Mexico, and last generation, California before Wisconsin) family and know what home Mexican cooking is. I just wanted to raise these issues because "city...king(LOL)" asked, and I do in fact live next to a large traditional Mexican neighborhood, and I've married into a Mexican family.
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Old 06-03-2015, 12:55 PM
 
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
1,244 posts, read 1,544,336 times
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Tacos can be made in different ways. Soft corn tortilla tacos are not the only "authentic" tacos.

In my family the only time we eat soft corn tortilla tacos at home is with buche and lengua. With the buche tacos we will have pico de gallo as a topping. With the lengua tacos my mom will make a similar topping with New Mexico green chiles and onions. Of course we wouldn't put cheese, lettuce and tomatoes on these kinds of tacos.

But we also make crunchy shell tacos. We make them a few different ways, with shredded chicken, shredded beef and a ground beef and potato mixture. But, instead of using pre-made shells we put the filling onto a flat corn tortilla then fold it in half and fry the whole thing. With these these kinds of tacos we use the cheese, lettuce, onion and tomato toppings. And we've always loved Pace Picante Sauce with these tacos.

The last way we make tacos in my family is the typical American way with the pre-made shells and ground beef flavored with a packaged taco seasoning such as Lowry's or McCormick (or my new favorite, the Taco Bell taco seasoning). These too we top with the cheddar cheese, iceberg lettuce, white onions and roma tomatoes.

Mexicans love roma tomatoes, one of those supposed "tasteless" tomatoes that food snobs love to deride.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cheese plate View Post
Right, or Chicago tacos, or LA tacos, or Mexican tacos, or really any area where authentic Mexican hasn't been bastardized by Americanization. Fake yellow processed cheeses, cheap nutrition-less iceburg lettuce, and mass-produced tasteless tomato slices are all products of the old America where the cheaper you can buy your food, the better, regardless of what it actually contains. Mass manufacture of foods the way we build them cars in Dee-troit.

My favorite joints down the street serve tacos that are tortillas, meat (spiced/cooked differently depending on the meat), cilantro and onion. I usually throw salsa and squeeze some lime on them. The addition of cheese and iceburg lettuce only distract from a perfect taco. I would prefer never eating iceburg lettuce on ANYTHING ever again - what exactly is it adding?

What's happening here is people are confusing Mexican food with Americanized Mexican food (southwest, tex-mex, etc.). And the people in those regions have such a long history around it they often mistakenly think what they have is more authentic than many areas dominated by first and second and third generation Mexicans, who in fact are used to and prefer a more authentic dish.
Please.

Albuquerque has tons of recent Mexican immigrants. The part of the city I've always lived in and am most familiar with has the places where recent Mexican immigrants are in Albuquerque - the southern half of the city below I-40.

Go along Bridge Boulevard in Albuquerque's South Valley and you will find nothing but places run by recent Mexican immigrants.

There are plenty of places and food trucks in Albuquerque that serve the kind of "authentic" tacos you are obsessing over - it's really a fetish, I think. This "new" America is all about stuck-up wannabes trying to outdo one another by proving how "authentic" their favorite ethnic restaurants are and how knowledgeable they are about those ethnic cuisines.

Meanwhile, the vast majority of people from those ethnicities are happy assimilating and incorporating your so-called "cheap", "nutrion-less" ingredients into our foods. We have no need to prove anything. And we don't have this bizarre hate for everything that is mundanely American. Really, what did iceberg lettuce ever do to you?
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Old 06-03-2015, 12:57 PM
 
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
1,244 posts, read 1,544,336 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SDPMiami View Post
New Mexican cuisine is a local variant cuisine that bears many similarities to Mexican food but also differences. It's not "Mexican" food. In some ways, you can argue that Tex-Mex is more "Mexican" than New Mexican food.

That being said, it's good but also one note. It doesn't compare to the varieties of Mexican food found across all regions of Mexico. There is only one city in the USA where you can eat a variety of quality of Mexican food easily and that's Los Angeles. Even other major, relatively Mexican cities, like Houston and Dallas area do not cut it. Chicago is surprisingly good given it's a midwestern city east of the Mississippi but it still has a long way to go before it catches up to Los Angeles.

That leaves San Diego. TBH, I don't see how anyone is voting for San Diego. Its Mexican fare is surprisingly weak given her location of being tucked in-between Los Angeles and Mexico. In fact, touching Mexico! Is it because San Diego is a border city? Or is it because a lot of midwestern tourists try "Mexican" food there for the first time? People who are voting San Diego, justify your position.
So, New Mexican food is one-note but all anybody seems to want to compare and base this on is soft corn tortilla-style tacos?

Where's this variety everybody is talking about?

My family lineage is northern and central Mexican and northern New Mexico Hispanics. We eat more than soft corn tortilla tacos, for chrissake.

Some foods that my family makes and eats that involve ingredients other than corn tortillas: calabacitas, chicharrones, menudo, pork posole, mole, colitas, coctel de camaron, oxtail stew, ceviche, carne adovada, albondigas, tamales, green chile stew, red chile with meat and potatoes, sopaipillas, empanadas, fideos, sopa (toasted elbow or shell macaroni, egg noodles or small pasta such as alphabet-style simmered in water flavored with tomato sauce), lengua (we do use it as a taco filling, but also have it just like that), fajitas and burritos (many different kinds from simple ones with just strips of green chile or slices of avocado to ones with a meat, potato and green chile mixture).

There are a few others that I'm forgetting. These are the ones we cook most often, though, so they came to mind quickly.

But since I am an American I don't just eat Mexican or New Mexican food all the time. I actually eat and make normal American things such as hamburgers, meatloaf, beef stew, pot roast and spaghetti with meatballs (let's not go down the path of authentic Italian foods that have been "bastardized" by Americans, shall we).
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Old 06-03-2015, 12:59 PM
 
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
1,244 posts, read 1,544,336 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheese plate View Post
Also - it doesn't take a yellow, brown, white, black or green person to know that the BEST of any kind of FOOD is not covered in iceburg lettuce, sliced tomatoes and processed American vegetable oi...I mean, "cheese." All it takes is a reasonable palette and some common sense.
You keep going on about American cheese when Sadie's does not serve American cheese. That picture of their food you are basing it on shows shredded cheddar cheese.
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Old 06-03-2015, 01:20 PM
 
Location: Milwaukee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABQalex View Post
You keep going on about American cheese when Sadie's does not serve American cheese. That picture of their food you are basing it on shows shredded cheddar cheese.
No, there have been several photos on this thread with yellow cheeses. Some may be cheddar, but some are likely American.

BEST dish of any sort in this country does not include iceburg lettuce. Sorry. That's just the way it is. It's water weight and nothing else. What value does this lettuce add to any dish? Why do you think it's ok to thumbs-up dishes that have sub-par ingredients that are also inauthentic in a BEST MEXICAN FOOD in the ENTIRE US thread?

It's not my fault your family picked up the same bad food habits as Europeans and African natives in this country. It has made you that much more food-poor compared to your family origins, this is a fact. I grew up with those ingredients, most of us did. But there's no reason to continue eating garbage once you grow up and experience the world.

Where on C-D would people be pushing fake Italian (for one) as BEST Italian? Where would they suggest that the lowest common denominator Italian-American diner food is actually BETTER than what you can get in Italy the way they are here with Mexico. Unreal. Next I suppose those ubiquitous cheapo Greek diners out east have better kabobs than in Europe

Murica
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Old 06-03-2015, 01:26 PM
 
Location: Willowbend/Houston
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Heres the deal. Mexican food is like American food, there are huge regional variations. It depends on what type of Mexican food you want.

Personally, the cities with the largest Mexican populations: Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Dallas, San Diego, San Francisco Bay, and Phoenix along with historically Mexican cities like Albuquerque, El Paso, San Antonio, and the Rio Grande Valley in Texas are going to be tops. If you cannot find excellent Mexican food in one of the above, youre just lazy.
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Old 06-03-2015, 01:51 PM
 
5,640 posts, read 13,340,902 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterlemonjello View Post
Heres the deal. Mexican food is like American food, there are huge regional variations. It depends on what type of Mexican food you want.

Personally, the cities with the largest Mexican populations: Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Dallas, San Diego, San Francisco Bay, and Phoenix along with historically Mexican cities like Albuquerque, El Paso, San Antonio, and the Rio Grande Valley in Texas are going to be tops. If you cannot find excellent Mexican food in one of the above, youre just lazy.
"Mexican" food has a very specific definition in the US though. Italian food in Italy varies greatly by region as well, but we call it all "Italian." There are specific places throughout the country where you can eat the lesser known varieties of Mexican or Italian food, but in our minds, we all agree what "Mexican" and "Italian" food means in the US. I know that any Mexican place is gonna have tacos, just like any Italian place is gonna have pasta. But not all taquerias make burritos. Not all osterie make risotto. Meatballs are American. Americans don't really eat arancini, Italians don't eat pepperoni. But in the US, Italian restaurants are applauded for having great meatballs. One can also have good risotto, but I've never had one as good as in Milan.

So yes, "Mexican" and "Italian" have a definition here that's different from their own country. "Mexican" in LA has a much closer definition than "Mexican" in most other cities. "Italian" is not defined like it is in Italy anywhere I can think of in the US. NYC makes good "American Italian," but it's mainly spaghetti and meatballs and lasagna and typical American dishes. Tagliatelle Bolognese and pizza di prosciutto crudo are much more typical dishes in Italy than in the US. And the risotto there is made differently as well. Even the types of pasta used are different, but it's still "Italian" to Americans.

One big factor for me, though, is al pastor. If a Mexican restaurant doesn't serve al pastor yet they have carne asada and pollo asado and other typical places, it's probably not too good. All the best places serve al pastor. Most Americans will just order the pollo or carne asada, but who people who know Mexican will order al pastor, tripa, or lengua. And I've been to places where "carne asada" was ground beef
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Old 06-03-2015, 01:52 PM
 
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
1,244 posts, read 1,544,336 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheese plate View Post
No, there have been several photos on this thread with yellow cheeses. Some may be cheddar, but some are likely American.
I would venture to say none are American cheese. Cheddar is actually cheaper than American cheese.

Quote:
BEST dish of any sort in this country does not include iceburg lettuce. Sorry. That's just the way it is. It's water weight and nothing else. What value does this lettuce add to any dish? Why do you think it's ok to thumbs-up dishes that have sub-par ingredients that are also inauthentic in a BEST MEXICAN FOOD in the ENTIRE US thread?
The best dish in this country does include iceberg lettuce, as far as I'm concerned. And that is enchiladas, which are my absolute favorite dish.

Iceberg lettuce is not a sub-par ingredient. What value does it add? Taste. Refreshment.

And I do think a cuisine which includes it is one of the best in the United States - New Mexican.

Quote:
It's not my fault your family picked up the same bad food habits as Europeans and African natives in this country. It has made you that much more food-poor compared to your family origins, this is a fact. I grew up with those ingredients, most of us did. But there's no reason to continue eating garbage once you grow up and experience the world.
Sorry, but you have not evolved into this superior human being. All your supposed superior ingredients will turn into sh*t the same way the food you are deeming inferior did before. And you will poop it out the same way you did before.

I've been blessed that most of the people in my family make incredible food that I love to eat. When I eat food prepared by the side of my family that still lives in Mexico it is not superior to the food made by my family here in New Mexico. Is it different? Yes. But it is not superior. I like them both the same.

And part of my family has been in New Mexico before there was a United States of America. If anything, they helped create some of those bad food habits in the 160 or so years New Mexico has been a part of the U.S.
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Old 06-03-2015, 02:00 PM
 
1,376 posts, read 946,372 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cityKing View Post
The only people I feel should have an opinion on what Mexican food actually is and what the best is are people of Hispanic origin and who have actually lived it culturally. There is no point in any other ethnic group outside Hispanic origin coming into our house and telling us whats real and what's not when they are white or any other background besides Hispanic. No living in a state where there is one Mexican neighborhood does not count, being married to a 1/2 does not count. Living in a region where their is minimal Hispanics does not count. Traveling a couple of times out of the country does not count .
Okay, but by that rationale you should just basically shut down all food threads like the who has the best Chinese or Italian food threads since most people aren't Chinese or Italian on here. And I've got a mom from Taiwan and relatives and ancestors in China, but I don't really care if non-Chinese tell me where they think is good Chinese food, nor do I think that solely having Chinese heritage means I'm an expert on every regional variety of Chinese food. I have relatives who are from China who run restaurants that are awful in the food they serve these days because they stopped caring years ago.

Food is food though, all people have taste buds. If someone lives somewhere with people making the food the traditional way and eats that style of food, regardless or ethnicity, one learns what they're looking for(a gaijin living in Japan for 30 years can know more about Japanese food than a third-generation Japanese-American who grew up in the States). People always seem to think if you're not born into a certain culture you can't cook it, which is nonsense. You just learn it just like anyone else. And what's authentic today, once started as something new--just like how tacos al pastor came from Lebanese immigrants to DF.

People like to mythologize food--but anyone can learn about it and eat it. The idea only ____ can cook this or you can only get it _____, is only half true. That being said the real Mexican food in Mexico is much better on average than Mexican food in most of the States, though the food has gotten much better and more authentic now that there's plenty of Mexican immigrants almost everywhere in the US these days.

Also claiming only people of Hispanic orgin can have an opinion about Mexican food--well, wouldn't it just be Mexican people, considering food in South America is mostly nothing like Mexican food and Cuban and Puerto Rican food are much different than most of Mexico as well?
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Old 06-03-2015, 02:05 PM
 
Location: Willowbend/Houston
13,403 posts, read 20,357,642 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jessemh431 View Post
"Mexican" food has a very specific definition in the US though. Italian food in Italy varies greatly by region as well, but we call it all "Italian." There are specific places throughout the country where you can eat the lesser known varieties of Mexican or Italian food, but in our minds, we all agree what "Mexican" and "Italian" food means in the US. I know that any Mexican place is gonna have tacos, just like any Italian place is gonna have pasta. But not all taquerias make burritos. Not all osterie make risotto. Meatballs are American. Americans don't really eat arancini, Italians don't eat pepperoni. But in the US, Italian restaurants are applauded for having great meatballs. One can also have good risotto, but I've never had one as good as in Milan.

So yes, "Mexican" and "Italian" have a definition here that's different from their own country. "Mexican" in LA has a much closer definition than "Mexican" in most other cities. "Italian" is not defined like it is in Italy anywhere I can think of in the US. NYC makes good "American Italian," but it's mainly spaghetti and meatballs and lasagna and typical American dishes. Tagliatelle Bolognese and pizza di prosciutto crudo are much more typical dishes in Italy than in the US. And the risotto there is made differently as well. Even the types of pasta used are different, but it's still "Italian" to Americans.

One big factor for me, though, is al pastor. If a Mexican restaurant doesn't serve al pastor yet they have carne asada and pollo asado and other typical places, it's probably not too good. All the best places serve al pastor. Most Americans will just order the pollo or carne asada, but who people who know Mexican will order al pastor, tripa, or lengua. And I've been to places where "carne asada" was ground beef
I grew up in LA, but living in Houston and Dallas afterward, I cannot say definatively that the Mexican food was better in LA. All three have top notch authentic Mexican food though in Dallas its more confined to the Barrios.
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