History And Culture

There were three main great civilizations living in Mexico. Aztecs, Mayans and the Spanish were all very big civilizations that came through Mexico and influenced the food that is eaten nowadays. These three civilizations contributed different ingredients Mexican food. The Mayans, being the first of these three civilizations in Mexico, contributed foods like corn tortillas, bean paste, tropical fruits, fish and wild game.

Aztec Influenced Mexican Food

Aztec Influenced Mexican Food

The Aztecs became the next big empire in central Mexico and they copied almost everything from the Mayans but they did contribute a few things that the Mayans did not have like honey, chili peppers, honey, salt and chocolate. These ingredients found their way into Mexican cuisine and into foods of different countries all over the world . This is because of the Spanish Conquistadors conquering the Aztecs and then taking their food back to Europe and then to the rest of the world.

The Spanish had greatest influence on the Mexican cuisine by introducing new livestock such as sheep, cow and pig. Herbs, spices and many dairy products were also introduced and are very important to create the various delicious dishes from Mexico.

The culture of these different civilizations played a massive part on the foods that travelled through the ages from the Mayans to common day food. Beliefs and religion played a big part of the Mayans life. According to their religion some animals were sacred like the jaguar because of it’s relevance as the God of hell. This is one of the reasons that jaguar is not eaten today in Mexico.

To learn more about the major historical influences on the Mexican food and their history click on the links below

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