Our post about the fermented foods of Mexico last year was so popular that we thought we would do part two – more fermented foods of Mexico for you! The process of fermenting foods has many benefits – it preserves the food, it adds microbes or ‘good bacteria’ to our guts, it makes food more digestible and it adds a zingy sour flavour to food. Fermented foods have been through a process of lactofermentation in which natural bacteria feed on the sugar and starch in the food creating lactic acid.
In our last blog post about Fermented Foods of Mexico, we looked at Escabeche, Cortido and the drinks Pulque and Tepache. Now here are some more fermented foods of Mexico to get your taste buds turning and your digestive system in order!
More fermented foods of Mexico
Cecina in Spanish refers to meat that has been salted and dried by means of air, sun or smoke. In Mexico Cecina is most often either sheets of marinated beef or pork cut that are thinly sliced and coated with chili pepper. The beef version is salted and marinated and laid to dry somewhat in the sun and you can eat it uncooked like you would prosciutto. The pork version must be cooked before consumption.
Hominy is made from whole corn kernels that have been soaked an alkali solution to soften the tough outer hulls. After soaking, the kernels are washed to remove the excess solution, the hull, and often the germ. The process is referred to as nixtamalization. Hominy can then be turned into grits or ground finely into masa flour. It’s added to the famous Mexican stew Pozole and or course we use it to make our Dona Cholita corn tortillas!
Pozol is the name of a fermented corn dough and the drink made from it, which has its origins in Pre-Columbian Mexico. The dough is rolled into balls or loaves and preserved in banana leaves. The drink is made by soaking the dough in water with other ingredients like chilli, honey and sugar. Besides its use as food, the drink has also been used as medicine and for religious ceremonies.