Christmas in Mexico is a vibrant blending of cultural traditions and culinary delights. It is a time when families gather to celebrate, share stories, and, most importantly, enjoy an array of delicious foods that have been passed down through generations. Mexican Christmas cuisine is as rich and varied as the country’s history, blending indigenous ingredients with European influences. Eddie’s Mexican Restaurant would like to highlight some of the favorite Mexican dishes that add flavor and joy to the Christmas festivities.
Tamales; A Holiday Staple
No Mexican Christmas is complete without tamales. These steamed bundles of masa or corn dough are filled with a variety of ingredients such as meats, cheeses, fruits, and chilies, then they are wrapped in corn husks or banana leaves. The preparation of tamales is often a family affair, known as ‘tamalada’, where everyone comes together to assemble them. It’s not just a cooking process but a bonding experience and a cherished holiday tradition.
Bacalao a la Vizcaína; A Spanish Influence
Bacalao a la Vizcaína, or Basque-style codfish, is a dish that reflects the European influence on Mexican cuisine. It is made with salted codfish, tomatoes, garlic, chilies, olives, and capers, creating a rich and tangy stew. This dish is a result of the Spanish tradition of eating seafood on Christmas Eve, adapted to Mexican tastes and ingredients.
Romeritos; A Pre-Hispanic Delicacy
Romeritos are a traditional dish dating back to pre-Hispanic times. It consists of seepweed which is a plant similar to rosemary (hence the name) that is cooked in a mole sauce and often mixed with potatoes and nopales or cactus leaves. Sometimes, it includes shrimp cakes, reflecting the blend of indigenous and Spanish culinary traditions.
Pozole; A Festive Soup
Pozole is a hearty and comforting stew, perfect for the chilly December nights. This soup is made from hominy corn with plenty of herbs and spices, and it’s typically served with shredded chicken or pork. Pozole is garnished with radishes, lettuce, onion, lime, and chili, making it a colorful and festive dish.
Buñuelos; A Sweet Treat
For dessert, buñuelos are a popular choice. These are thin, deep-fried pastries, covered in a syrup made from piloncillo which is an unrefined cane sugar. Crispy, sweet, and light, buñuelos are a delightful treat after a hearty meal. They are often enjoyed with a cup of hot chocolate or atole, a traditional corn-based beverage.
Ponche Navideño; A Warm Toast to the Season
To accompany these dishes, there is Ponche Navideño, a warm, fragrant fruit punch. Made with seasonal fruits like guava, apples, and pears, along with cane sugar and spices like cinnamon and tamarind, it is often spiked with a splash of rum or tequila. Served hot, it is not only delicious but also a great way to keep warm and celebrate the festive spirit.
Authentic Mexican Cuisine in Las Vegas, Nevada (Just Minutes from Summerlin, North LV, Paradise, Lone Mountain & Henderson, NV)
Christmas in Mexico is a time of joy, reflection, and, above all, a celebration of togetherness often centered around food. Each dish carries with it a story and a piece of Mexico’s rich cultural tapestry. From the communal preparation of tamales to the festive serving of Pozole, these dishes are more than just food, they are a celebration of history, family, and the enduring spirit of the holiday season. As you gather around the table this Christmas, let these traditional Mexican dishes bring warmth and joy to your festive celebrations. When you are craving some great Mexican cuisine come on down to Eddie’s Mexican Restaurant, you may find of these Christmas delights on our menu!