Author Topic: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?  (Read 8397 times)

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jedikaiti

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #60 on: September 09, 2013, 12:17:03 PM »
I'm going to say no, because outside of Mexico and New Mexico the critical ingredient of chili pepper is relatively hard to find  ;D  I mean seriously, you go up to Colorado and the think green chili involves bell peppers  :P

I don't find that to be true. I was in a small town Wisconsin grocery yesterday. Even though though there produce section is pretty sad, they had fresh jalapenos, serranos, poblanos, plaintains, cilantro, tomatillos, masa and a variety of tortillas. This small town also has a Mexican grocery store with a small attached restaurant. The Mexican market has enough ingredients to make mole and pipian from scratch.

Well I meant more in terms of prepared food and restaurants.

I can buy every thing I need to make about any middle eastern dish you care to name, but there's no more then a couple of restaurants that serve middle eastern food of any kind here.

I'm in Colorado and around here, the green chili usually involves chili peppers. Sometimes quite a lot of them.
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Pen^2

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #61 on: September 09, 2013, 01:24:46 PM »
I'm going to say no, because outside of Mexico and New Mexico the critical ingredient of chili pepper is relatively hard to find  ;D  I mean seriously, you go up to Colorado and the think green chili involves bell peppers  :P

I would like to dispel this notion. Maybe it is true within the USA, but beyond that it certainly isn't. Here in Singapore, chili pepper is an ingredient found in just about every place you can think of. I mean that quite literally--I am not exaggerating. Even McDonald's have a few chili burgers and things which are specific to this area. I spent the few months before we moved here purposefully building up my chili tolerance because otherwise I didn't want to be restricted and unable to eat about half the food (literally). When I first visited years earlier, we had crab (yum yum yum) at a big restaurant and I asked for it without the usual half-cup of ground chili. The server was very polite and explained that he'd have to check with the chef because they'd never had anyone who wanted food without chili before. In the surrounding countries (Malaysia etc.) chili is also extremely common. Hawker centres (kind of like a collection of open-air cafes and diners) consistently have containers of chili powder or chili flakes to add to your meals in case the amount of chili that it was cooked with isn't enough. Seriously, it's more ubiquitous than salt shakers or sauce.

Mexican food isn't common here at all, but absolutely not due to any lack of chili.

In Australia, where I grew up, there are a few Taco Bell-type places here and there. More authentic Mexican restaurants and eateries do exist, but not very commonly.

PastryGoddess

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #62 on: September 09, 2013, 05:50:38 PM »
I'm going to say no, because outside of Mexico and New Mexico the critical ingredient of chili pepper is relatively hard to find  ;D  I mean seriously, you go up to Colorado and the think green chili involves bell peppers  :P

I would like to dispel this notion. Maybe it is true within the USA, but beyond that it certainly isn't. Here in Singapore, chili pepper is an ingredient found in just about every place you can think of. I mean that quite literally--I am not exaggerating. Even McDonald's have a few chili burgers and things which are specific to this area. I spent the few months before we moved here purposefully building up my chili tolerance because otherwise I didn't want to be restricted and unable to eat about half the food (literally). When I first visited years earlier, we had crab (yum yum yum) at a big restaurant and I asked for it without the usual half-cup of ground chili. The server was very polite and explained that he'd have to check with the chef because they'd never had anyone who wanted food without chili before. In the surrounding countries (Malaysia etc.) chili is also extremely common. Hawker centres (kind of like a collection of open-air cafes and diners) consistently have containers of chili powder or chili flakes to add to your meals in case the amount of chili that it was cooked with isn't enough. Seriously, it's more ubiquitous than salt shakers or sauce.

Mexican food isn't common here at all, but absolutely not due to any lack of chili.

In Australia, where I grew up, there are a few Taco Bell-type places here and there. More authentic Mexican restaurants and eateries do exist, but not very commonly.

Thank you for this.  Chili peppers are common all over the world and show up in many cuisines.

ladyknight1

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #63 on: September 11, 2013, 09:08:31 AM »
I am married to a chile-head and we can buy at least 10 varieties of dried chile at our corner market. If we need more, we have ethnic grocery stores and a spice shop within a 30 minute drive, so we can get anything. I have at least 8 varieties of chile in my house at any given time.

White Lotus

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #64 on: September 16, 2013, 03:03:30 PM »
That_One_Girl, you found Mexican of any variation in Japan?  Where?  Please, where? When I am in Asia, that is the one cuisine I like that I can't find.  In cities, I would expect to be able to locate a high-end Mexican/Mexican, often labeled by region, restaurant almost anywhere, but I can't find one in Asia!  Singapore, Tokyo, Taipei, Bangkok, Beijing, nope.  Not on my usual beats.  I don't even see Faux-Mex fast food!  So what do I crave?  In places known for their own fine cuisine?  And with ethnic food restaurants, including US chains, abounding?  Cal-Mex, Tex-Mex, New-Mex, Sonoran, Mex-Mex, etc., etc.  -- the one thing I can't find!

Ereine

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #65 on: September 16, 2013, 03:07:21 PM »
At least in 2009 there seemed to be at least five Mexican restaurants in Tokyo: http://travel.cnn.com/tokyo/eat/5-best-mexican-restaurants-962738 .

Katana_Geldar

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #66 on: November 17, 2013, 04:59:55 PM »
This is a place DH and I go to near us. It's fantastic, big servings and the owner's actually from Mexico. He does have 'gringo' items on the menu as I guess people expect them, but there's stuff here you normally wouldn't see in an average Mexican restaurant.

We need to go more often.

http://dossenoritas.com.au

Hmmmmm

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #67 on: November 18, 2013, 09:56:07 AM »
^^
I love the mixture of this menu. It looks like he's been able to pull items from everywhere.
Baja California with his fish tacos
California with his beer battered fried fish tacos
Texas with some of his TexMex enchiladas & fajitas
New Mexico/Colorado with his pork verde offerings
Mexico with his mole's


mechtilde

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #68 on: November 18, 2013, 10:08:50 AM »
There are a couple of Mexican places- but how authentic they are, I wouldn't like to say...

I do have a Mexican colleague (please note that this is very unusual in the UK) who has terrible problems getting decent ingredients- she either has to bring it over from Mexico or go to another city nearly three hours away.
NE England

GlitterIsMyDrug

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #69 on: November 18, 2013, 05:40:02 PM »
About 15 years ago we hosted a young man who was visiting from Germany.  We asked if he had ever had Mexican food and he answered that he had - Taco Bell.  We took him someplace a bit more authentic.

I know many people who seem to think Taco Bell is Mexican food, all of them from the states. Don't get me wrong, I like my Taco Bell, but if I want Mexican food I'm going to that shady whole in the wall place down the street where my friends make me order because they can't understand the server most of the time. Wonderful food. If I want a taco for a dollar, I'll head to Taco Bell.

This whole thread is just making me think of a Bowling for Soup song "Come back to Texas" which is about a girl leaving her boyfriend for another guy and running off to Ohio and one of the lines is "The Mexican food sucks north of here anyways", I laugh and laugh. My Ohio buddy tells me Ohio does have lousy Mexican food. I've never been to Ohio and I have no opinion on any of their food.

Katana_Geldar

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #70 on: November 18, 2013, 05:45:18 PM »
This is a place we went to on a hens night (bachelorette party).

http://m.mejico.com.au/#!/menu/food

The queso was great!

Danika

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #71 on: November 18, 2013, 06:47:55 PM »
I know many people who seem to think Taco Bell is Mexican food, all of them from the states. Don't get me wrong, I like my Taco Bell, but if I want Mexican food I'm going to that shady whole in the wall place down the street where my friends make me order because they can't understand the server most of the time. Wonderful food. If I want a taco for a dollar, I'll head to Taco Bell.

I grew up in Colorado where there are many Mexican restaurants. When I moved to Massachusetts, I missed Mexican food terribly. When I went to the few restaurants that claimed to have Mexican food there, I saw cockroaches in the kitchen and behind the bar, and I had friends who had seen mice. The only "Mexican" restaurant where I did not see roaches or mice in the Boston/Cambridge area was Taco Bell. So my favorite Mexican restaurant in the Boston area is Taco Bell, for that reason.

lowspark

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #72 on: November 19, 2013, 12:12:02 PM »
Taco Bell is to Mexican food as McDonald's is to real Hamburgers. It's ok if you're in a hurry or want something cheap, but it's not "the real thing". However, if it were the only Mexican food you'd ever had (just as if McD's were the only burgers you'd ever had) you would think that was it because you wouldn't have anything to compare it to.

crella

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #73 on: November 19, 2013, 08:26:32 PM »
Re: Mexican food in Japan, this place was great-

http://members3.jcom.home.ne.jp/pancho2/e-index.html

Worth the trip.

Edit: I forgot to mention that it's a very small place, you definitely need a reservation, especially on weekends.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2013, 09:14:01 PM by crella »

sweetonsno

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Re: Is Mexican food popular outside North America?
« Reply #74 on: November 21, 2013, 02:28:57 AM »
Chili peppers vary widely from region to region. The chilis used in Korean cooking are totally different from the ones used in Latin cooking, which are different from the ones used in Indian cooking, and so forth. The level and type of heat is totally different.

On that note, I found one Mexican restaurant in Seoul. (I think there may have been two total.) It wasn't bad, but it wasn't quite authentic due to a lack of essential ingredients, like cumin and beans. My bean burrito, while tasty, was full of baked beans, which is what was available from the international market. Nobody imported plain pinto or black beans, so I got the baked beans. It was tasty, but wound up being somewhere between English breakfast and Mexican.