GASTRONOMIA TLAXCALA 3
GASTRONOMIA TLAXCALA1
GASTRONOMIA TLAXCALA 3
GASTRONOMIA TLAXCALA1

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WHAT TO EAT IN TLAXCALA

Mexico’s smallest state offers is well- recognized in the world for its rich gastronomic tradition based on its pre-Hispanic heritage.

The “tlaolli”or toasted corn, know as “izquitl”, was part of their basic, traditional diet. While it was eaten fresh, most corn was dried, nixtamalized and ground into a dough called masa, to make different dishes like: the “tlatloyos” of bean or “ayocote” with chilli and epazotl; “tamalli” or tamales, “atolli” or atole, “chilatolli” or chilatole, “pozolatl” or pozole and the indispensable “tlaxcalli” or tortillas.

The masa was also mixed with cocoa to create one of the favorite pre-Hispanic drink the “pinole”.

Other important ingredient was the “cuitlacoche”, a tasty corn smut also known as the Mexican truffle.

The mexicas imposed a comercial blockade to the Tlaxcalans, or Talaxcaltecs for more than 60 years, they coudn’t get salt, so they replaced it with tequexquite, a natural mineral salt, which they obtained mainly in the area of Tequexquitla.

This is how the culinary art of the region was enriched with the use of herbs and plants such as cilantro, parsley, epazote, papaloquilitl or pápaloquelite, quintoniles, purslane, huauzontle, pepicha, miltomate, onion, chili, ayotli or pumpkin, ayotontli or zucchini and nopal.

The insects were part of the pre-Hispanic gastronomic delights of Tlaxcala, such as grasshoppers, chinicuiles (red worms of the maguey), escamoles (ant larvae) and ahuauhtli or ahuaxtle (mosquito eggs).

Some fishes from the nearby lakes like charales, axolotl or ajolotes, acociles (small river shrimp) and other river fishes are also important in the regional gastronomy.

Tlaxcaltecan cuisine incorporates much of the prehispanic heritage, among the dish you can't resist are: the quesadillas of squash blossom and huitlacoche; the “escamoles”, maguey worms, which are served in a clay pot accompanied by freshly made tortillas and a chile sauce; the “chileatole”, a corn atoleseasoned with chili; “tlatlapas”, a peculiar soup with bean flour, nopales and chiles; the pumpkin blossom soup and the “sopa de milpa”, cornfield soup, this soup incorporates not only corn, but a medley of other Tlaxcalan ingredients like beans or chili, among others.

Over time, this cuisine was enriched with Spanish ingredients to create a fusion with a variety of flavors and aromas, and today you can enjoy dishes like: meat in pulque; “chamorro al guajillo”, a chili pork stew; the mutton mixiotes, this is a dish seasoned with several chilis (most common pasilla and guajillochil) and thyme, cumin, bay leaves, oregano, onion and garlic, all the ingredients are wrapped in maguey leaves in individual portions and then slow-cooking; the sesame pipian, a nice and tasty combination of pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and chilis; and “barbacoa”, goat cooked in a clay oven, among many others.

Among the "mestizo" candies, we can mention: the “tlaxcales”, made with corn kernels; “alegrías”, amaranth sweet; “buñuelos” a deep-fried square made out of a flour dough with cottage cheese and honey made from piloncillo; and the “muéganos huamantlecos”, made out of lard, water, salt, flour and anise, soaked in melted piloncillo, sprinkled with finely milled cinnamon and covered in colorful obleas, melts in your mouth instantly, it is a unique delight.

Gastronomy and typical cuisine in Tlaxcala

“Tlatlapas” Recipe

Ingredients for 6 servings:

  • 3 red tomatos
  • 6 guajillo chilies
  • ½ kg red kidney beans
  • 2 tablespoon lard
  • 10 nopales (nopal cactus pads without spines)
  • 1 branch of epazote
  • vegetable oil
  • salt to taste

Directions:

Remove seeds from the guajillo chiles and place in a medium bowl. Pour in 3 cups boiling water and cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap; let sit until chiles are softened, it will take around 20–25 minutes. Transfer chiles and soaking liquid to a blender and blend on high until smooth, about 1 minute; set aside.

Roast the tomatoes in the oven for about 30 minutes until skins start to wrinkle. Then place the tomatoes and their juices in a blender. It is passed through a sieve and poured into a saucepan with a little oil.

Add the chili mixture and season. Cooked the beans in a pot with little water; let them cook over medium heat, stirring constantly. Add the lard, pepper and epazote, and season with salt.

Slice the nopal pads in strips. Then cook the nopal cactus pads in boiling water, changing the water once to help them lose their sliminess; rinse one last time. Add the mixture of tomato and chiles to the pot with the beans, as well as the nopales.

It is cooked until it is hot and served.

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Take note of all the dishes you can taste and discover in Mexico, their ingredients and where they come from
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