Discover 5 of the most famous dishes in Oaxaca

Oaxacan food is an authentic jewel of Mexican gastronomy, a feast for the senses that reflects the richness of the culture and history of this region. Each bite is an immersion in centuries of culinary tradition, where flavors, aromas and ancestral techniques merge to create a unique experience.

So, if you are a lover of good food and want to embark on a culinary journey that transports you through time and culture, Oaxacan food is a must-see.

This blog will take you on a delicious tour of the culinary treasures of Oaxaca, exploring the flavors, stories and traditions that make this region a gem in the world of gastronomy. Get ready to taste the authentic essence of Oaxacan food!

1.-Oaxacan Tlayudas.-

At the heart of Oaxacan food, we find iconic dishes such as tlayudas, authentic crunchy corn toasts that serve as a canvas for an explosion of flavors. The tlayudas are covered with texto, the fatty soul of the tlayudas, which is the thick, burnt fat that results from frying the chicharrón, followed by black beans, quesillo, avocado, and often roast beef, jerky, or chorizo. A delight that combines the simplicity of the ingredients with the complexity of its flavor.

2.-Oaxacan Tamales.-

Oaxacan tamales, another star of local cuisine, are small packages of corn filled with a variety of stews: from the traditional mole negro to the exquisite mole coloradito. Each bite is a tribute to the patience and skill of the hands that prepare them, and an invitation to explore the nuances of Oaxaca’s rich culinary tradition.

3.-Roasted meats.-

Roasted Meats in Oaxaca are a culinary example of the fusion of indigenous tradition and Spanish influence that characterizes the region’s gastronomy. These meats, prepared on the grill or charcoal, are a delicious manifestation of Oaxaca’s passion for intense and authentic flavors.

Tasajo: Tasajo is one of the most emblematic dishes of Oaxacan food. This meat, usually beef, is cut into thin strips and marinated with a mixture of garlic, salt and dried chilies, before being grilled.

Cecina: Cecina is another delicious option that you will find in Oaxaca. Cecina is served in tacos, tlayudas or simply with garnishes such as nopales (cactus) and quesadillas.

Chorizo: Oaxacan Chorizo is a regional version of this popular sausage in Mexican cuisine. It is characterized by its smoky and spicy flavor, derived from the mixture of pork and dried chili peppers.

 

 

Memelitas Garnachas
garnachas istmeñas

4.-Memelitas and Garnachas.-

Memelitas and Garnachas are small culinary wonders. These corn tortillas, which have been a staple in the Oaxacan diet for centuries, are distinguished by their circular shape and ornate «crown-like» edge. Its name comes from the word «meme» in Zapotec, which means «thick», referring to the consistency of corn. This dish, simple in appearance, is a true gastronomic gem.

The base of the Memelitas is fresh corn dough, which is spread and cooked on a comal until it lightly browns, creating a crispy surface but maintaining its soft and spongy interior. They can be accompanied by a variety of ingredients, such as ricotta (a fresh cheese typical of Oaxaca), pumpkin flower, quesillo (a semi-hard Oaxacan cheese), pressed chicharrón, and red or green chili sauce. Garnachas, on the other hand, are a real explosion of flavor. These delicacies are small tortillas, fried until crispy, and then topped with a mixture of shredded meat, often pork or beef, and a red chili sauce.

The history of Memelitas and Garnachas is intertwined with that of the indigenous communities of Oaxaca. These dishes have been prepared for centuries by Zapotec and Mixe women, who have transmitted their knowledge and techniques from generation to generation.

5.-The Seven Oaxacan Moles.-

The history of Oaxacan moles dates back to pre-Hispanic times, where basic ingredients such as corn, chili peppers and chocolate were already used in local indigenous cuisine. With the arrival of the Spanish, new ingredients such as spices and meats were incorporated, thus creating a unique culinary fusion. The patience and care required to prepare these moles reflects the deep dedication to tradition and passion for the food that is emblematic of Oaxaca.

Oaxacan seven moles are a truly unique culinary manifestation that reflects the rich history, culture and tradition of Oaxaca. Each of these moles is a work of art in itself, a dance of flavors, textures and ingredients that tell the story of this region of Mexico.

  • Mole Negro: The Mole Negro is perhaps the most iconic of the seven Oaxacan moles. Its dark color comes from a carefully selected mixture of chilies, chocolate and spices. This mole is believed to have roots dating back to the pre-Hispanic cultures of Oaxaca, and its flavor is a sublime combination of sweet and spicy.
 
  • Mole Rojo: Mole Rojo is a mixture of dried chilies, garlic, onion, and spices, and is often served with pork. Its flavor is rich and deep, with a spicy touch that contrasts wonderfully with the sweetness of the meat.
 
  • Mole Coloradito: This mole is characterized by its bright reddish color and is prepared with dried chilies, garlic, spices and tomatoes. Mole Coloradito is commonly served with beef and is known for its balanced flavor.
 
  • Yellow Mole: Yellow Mole is distinguished by its light yellow color and its smooth, fruity flavor. Its base includes guajillo and ancho chiles, as well as ingredients such as tomato, saffron, and herbs.
 
  • Mole Verde: This mole stands out for its bright green color and its fresh, herbaceous flavor. Its base is a combination of green chiles, herbs, and garlic, which is mixed with chicken or pork broth.
 
  • Mole Chichilo: Mole Chichilo is characterized by its dark brown color and its smoky, earthy flavor. It is prepared with dried chilies, tomatoes, and corn ash, which gives it its distinctive flavor.
 
  • Mole Manchamanteles: Sometimes known as «Mole Tablecloth Stainer» because of its bright red color, Mole Manchamanteles combines dried chiles, tomatoes, pineapple, and banana with pork or chicken. It is a sweet and spicy mixture that represents the diversity of Oaxaca ingredients.
 

Each dish in Oaxacan food tells its own story, a narrative of generations of expert hands who have transmitted their knowledge over time. It is a celebration of the cultural diversity of Oaxaca, where indigenous, African and Spanish influences merge to create a palette of flavors that is both unique and unforgettable.

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