I would like to start by introducing myself. They call me “Chef”. I have more than 20 years in this industry. I have worked at hotels, hospitals, restaurants and senior citizen communities.

I started like most of us, as a dishwasher and slowly began to move up the latter to a better position. I decided to enter culinary school in Houston, TX. I finished school and my career as a chef began!

Why this title for my blog? Well, this profession has many secrets ...

Cooking without secrets blog will give everyone a chance to interact with questions, comments, experiences and why not express what you love about the art of cooking!

I will help you as much as I can so that you can sample this blog with colleagues and experts on the subject!

For my first blogs, I thought it was important to give you a bit of history regarding the most popular ingredients in Mexican food, and then get into more discussions of personal experiences.

So let me start with the basics:


According to the book, “Historia Gastronómica de México” by Salvador Novo, this grass plant is said to have appeared in the wild humid lands of South America, although it has also been found in Central America. However, it was in the Coxcatlán Valley, Tehuacán, in the state of Puebla, where its primitive inhabitants hybridized it from wild grasses, which imposes a reflection on the genetic knowledge of the Indians in this branch, starting from three forms of 20 grasses: teosinte, tripsacum and corn itself (Antillean voice), whose Nahuatl name is tlaolli, which means cured and dry grain. In fact, continuous migrations brought this product to Peru and other places in the southern region, so it became a staple food for established peoples from the current southern lands of the United States to Argentina.

From corn, the first important Mexican food base was produced, of which there are various forms: tortilla, atole (totonquia tullí), totopoxte, pinole, tender corn, tlatlaoyo or tlacoyo (from tlatlaolli, ground corn and the ending ye or I, who has), tamales, zacahuil, pozole, chicha (chichíatl: fermented sour water), ezquite (izquitl), etc., traditional processes that remain almost intact in their original indigenous form and coexist, in some cases with the acquisition of products provided by the aftermath of more than five hundred years of European colonialism. Some other derivatives of corn, such as cuitlacoche or huitlacoche (from cuítlal, shit, and cochi, to sleep): grains of the corn cob degenerated by the effect of a fungus called Ustilago maydis, highly appreciated by the Mexican and ultimately decades by prestigious international chefs and restaurants; there is also the chileatole (corn atole drink with chili) and other drinks with a strong alcoholic consistency, such as tesgüino (corruption of tecuín or tecuino), a native of Jalisco, Nayarit and Chihuahua, as well as zendecho and yorique, which since Time immemorial they function among the Indians as elements of ritual intoxication.

Finally, there is the use of corn stalk or milohuate for a kind of chicha where only the stem is used when the ear is not yet ripe; There is also the use of leaves to wrap tamales, cheese and tuna honey, vegetables, meats and fish steamed from the oven or barbecue (a voice of Caribbean origin that means "wattle" or "scaffolding with struts ", same word that exists documented since 1518, in the Collection of unpublished documents of the Archive of the Indies. Madrid, 1864)

Many are the culinary products, between drinks, meals and desserts, that corn has fostered in Mexico since its appearance more than twenty-two thousand years ago, ranging from the settlement of the continent to the present day; forms that popular culture has preserved with different names, manners, styles and characteristics, depending on the place to which they correspond. In this way, we have many stews, among which the cuitlacoche with corn, green chilies and zucchini stand out; the cornfield pozole, the tlacoyos, the ezquites, the tortilla soup, the sopes, the Mexican-style timbale etc.

What did you think of this little lesson about corn?

Do you have a recipe to share?

Leave your comment on this page and we will continue studying Mexican gastronomy without secrets!!

See you soon,

Chef Alex


Historia Gastronómica de México

Novo, Salvador, Editorial Porrua

5ta Edicion, Av. Republica de Argentina, 15

Mexico, 1979

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