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Culinary Arts of Sonora

 
     

Sonora Style Mexican Food
by Debra Conrad

Living in the desert southwest Arizona, we eat a lot of Mexican food. You might have a few "chain" Mexican food restaurants in your area... but until you have eaten the southwest Arizona Sonoran style Mexican food... you won't know why we think it's the best tasting Mexican style food... ever!

Mexican style foods are varied across the country... New Mexico style Mexican food is very different than Sonoran style.

When you say 'Mexican food' and you might think of burritos and tacos from a fast food joint. These are the very heavy style foods, traditional product of Northern Mexico (Sonora, Mexico).

There are many other regions of Mexican food... Aztec, Mayan and Spanish influences, with a bit of French as well.

Cheese Crisp. When you think of pizza you naturally think of Italian food. But, did you know that there is a traditional Mexican pizza made from corn tortillas? The tortillas are usually 18" to 24" in diameter and covered with a variety of Mexican milk cheeses. They are cut into wedges just like pizza but we smother them with salsa and a few jalapeño peppers.

Frijoles-refried beans, are used in a variety of Mexican dishes. The beans are cooked so long that they break down into a smooth consistency very nearly resembling a soup. Because they are traditionally cooked with lard... the taste is unique. Refried beans made locally are one of my "comfort foods".

Sonoran style includes many beef, chicken and pork dishes. Most meats are marinated... Pollo Asada, Carne asada and Carnitas are the names you will be looking for.

But there are an equal number of much lighter dishes that are favorites of Mexican cuisine lovers...

Ceviche - is made with raw fish... marinated in citrus fruit juices such as lime. My favorite includes avocado and celery in the mix along with shrimp and chunks of crab meat. This is a cool soup... served mostly in the summer months.

Cheeses are as popular in Mexico's dishes as it is in French cooking. The cheeses of Mexico are not just derivatives from their distant European rivals. Chiapas may resemble feta, but it is an example of Mexican expertise in cheese. Criollo may look and taste similar to Muenster, but no German snuck into the country to produce this outstanding native product.

Desserts, are very popular south of the border. Flan (a kind of caramel custard) is the classic example, but there are many others. We have our favorite bakery to purchase Pumpkin empanadas (really just a turnover) in Autumn.

Don't forget to try some of our favorite drinks:

Rompope is a rum-flavored Mexican liqueur that is similar to fine Irish cream. Everyone has heard of a margarita, but you haven't tasted one like the locals make until you've had one made with Mexican Controy. And a Michelada, is new to us. We just were introduced last summer and now it's our favorite drink to order when we are in Baja, Mexico. It's made with a Mexican cerveza (beer) which has a bit Tabasco, soy sauce and Worcestershire added. The rim is coated with a light ring of something spicy... I haven't quite put my finger on yet.

For drinks that don't include alcohol try a Horchata, a traditional milk drink, which is soothing and cool. Aqua de fresca is made from a variety of fruit juices is really popular both north and south of the border.

It's easy to find a Mexican-style dish you will love. I haven't even started on the enchiladas, tamales or CHILI RELLENO. And... you have to visit southern Arizona... to taste the true Sonora Style Mexican Food.

 

 

 

CULINARY NOTES

Here are three characteristics of this state's cuisine:

  1. expert beef preparation because of its arid-inland ranching
  2. great seafood in towns along its coast
  3. much processed food and articles made of wheat flour instead of cornmeal because of its proximity to the USA

TRADITIONAL DISHES TO LOOK FOR

  • Puchero or Cocido (mostly in north)-- beef cooked with garbanzos, sweetcorn, string beans, squash, carrots, potato and cabbage
  • Chivichangas -- tacos made with a wheat-flour tortilla wrapped over meat (chivichanga de res), beans (chivichanga de frijoles) or cheese (chivichanga de queso), and fried in oil
  • Machaca con Verdura -- dried beef macerated and seasoned with onion, tomato and green chili

SEAFOOD

  • Camarones a la Parrilla -- shrimp in their shells, prepared on a grill and served with ample of garlic sauce

TRADITIONAL ALCOHOLIC DRINKS

  • Bacanora -- whisky from fermented sap of the mezcalero maguey
  • Tesgüino -- made from corn (maize), traditionally cooked in an earthenware pot, then put into another earthenware kettle with local brown sugar (piloncillo) and water, and allowed to ferment for 8-10 days.

 

     

Sonora's Cuisine  |  Sinaloa's Cuisine  |  Chihuahua's Cusine

     
 

-   S  P  O  N  S  O  R  S   -

 

Bonifacio's Gourmet Restaurant - Hotel Torres del Fuerte. El Fuerte, Sinaloa, Mexico.

Bonifacios.com

 

 

Hotel Torres del Fuerte

Bonifacio's Gourmet Restaurant

Eclectic fusion cuisine inspired in Mexico.  The setting is an antique chapel built by the Jesuits, the first settlers in town along with the Spaniards about 400 years ago.  Its thick brick-adobe paste walls have been carefully restored along with the wooden Amapa beam ceilings to give it a special "Old World" charmThe word eclectic comes into play again when dealing with its decor and glamor, exquisite paintings, elegant wall mirrors, discrete lighting, romantic candles, extravagant chandeliers all perfectly combine into an enchanting dining experience. El Fuerte, Sinaloa, Mexico.  

FODOR'S Choice 2009

Dinner Reservations

Reservations Required 

 Bonifacio's Chef        

Bonifacio's Cotton Club - Gourmet Restaurant & Beach lounge. San Carlos, Sonora, Mexico.

 

Bonifacio's Cotton Club - Gourmet Restaurant & Beach lounge. San Carlos, Sonora, Mexico.

Bonifacio's Cotton Club

Gourmet Restaurant & Beach Lounge

Eclectic fusion cuisine inspired in Mexico. Featuring a  beach front lounge and luxurious dining room with live music nightly. Destination weddings, catering and special event planning. Playa Los Algodones, San Carlos, Sonora, Mexico.   Bonifacios.com

Bonifacio's Barra Gourmet 

Restaurant Bar & Lounge

Eclectic fusion cuisine inspired in Mexico. Experience romantic elegance in fine city dining and more casual patio seating available. Destinations weddings, catering and special event planning. Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico. 

Bonifacios.com

     

Sonora's Cuisine  |  Sinaloa's Cuisine  |  Chihuahua's Cusine

     
 

Sonora, Mexico

 
     
 

Torres Travel Company - We are a tour company specializing in the Copper Canyon and Baja California's most popular destinations. El Fuerte, Sinaloa, Mexico

 
 

52 (622) 132-6152

 

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