Susanna Marie Elena Thank you for sharing Sonia’s Mama’s Picadillio Con Papas. I was flooded with many memories. Picadillio is such a simple comfort food.
I like to jokingly say I grew up on hamburger meat and kool-aid. If it wasn’t tacos, enchiladas, lasagna, hamburgers, meatloaf, casseroles; with hamburger meat, veggies and pasta mixture, spaghetti or picadillio night. It had to be Sunday when we always had chicken, very similar to my Forest Gump hamburger meat menu existence. Every Sunday we had chicken either; in mole, chicken soup, chicken salad, fried, baked or barbecued.
One of my favorite all time dishes are nopales, the simplest of flavors. I don’t need any cheese on them; just simple fresh chile, onions, tomatoes y cilantro with a squeeze of lime juice and sal. Place on a charred corn tortilla and I’m near heaven. In second place would be tacos dorados de papa or flautas de papa. I recently made some for my sister, brother in law, Ben and Adelita while she was recuperating from shoulder surgery. My greatest pleasure is in watching people eat “con sabor.” Nothing fancy, nothing pretentious, just simple good food, served with cariño.
One of my close friends recently told me they did not consider Mexican food “gourmet.” Initially, I was offended, not because I think Mexican food is the best, but because I believe food does not have to be expensive nor “gourmet” to be good! I also believe Mexican food can be gourmet! I have tasted so much “lifeless” foods at expensive, high-end restaurants. I’m still trying to figure out the “foam” fad! I have eaten some of the tastiest foods at someone’s humble home or taco trucks prepared with love and it darn well wasn’t fancy nor “gourmet!”
I started thinking of dishes and foods of Mexico. I started thinking of the countless moles in every color possible that take days to prepare, authentic carnitas (not fried pork chunks passing as carnitas). Fire-pit roasted borrego (lamb) and cabrito (goat) or barbacoa I was raised on. My Mama made a beautiful chile rellano en caldito de jitomate dish that would make you want to spank your Abuelita. The fresh seafood ceviches, fresh fish and fish soups I ate in Puerto Vallarte. Fresh homemade corn tortillas with homemade pozole. Although, I did not grow up with huitlacoche (a corn smut fungus) it is considered a delicacy. I tasted it as an adult, personally, I did not consider it a delicacy! And, it hit me, what one person may consider a delicacy or gourmet, another may not, it is so subjective!
I do not consider nachos, Frito bowls nor enchiritos foods of my ancestors!
So please do not talk to me about Mexican food not being “gourmet!”
My people’s food is flavorful and delicious comfort food. On second though, I would rather have tasty comfort food than gourmet!