Home > culture, diary, food, health, race > Why did we have to go to Raging Burrito again?

Why did we have to go to Raging Burrito again?

And every single time for Mexican food here in the US?

Because most authentic Mexican refried beans have lard. And it’s hard to convince people that Taco Bell doesn’t. No, really.

But why does authentic (=traditional) Mexican food have lard, anyway? After all, pigs weren’t native to America anyway, right? [ Unless you’re talking about guinea pigs (I remember seeing a litter in Peru being kept for future food – urgh!)].

Pigs have been domesticated since ancient times in the Old World and are known for their exceptional intelligence. Domestic Pigs are found across Europe and the Middle East and extend into Asia as far as Indonesia and Japan. They were brought to southeastern North America from Europe by De Soto and other early Spanish explorers.

But this, as everything else, has to do with major patriarchial and religious wang-wagging. Read on:

With the culmination of the Reconquista and the rise of Catholic fundamentalism at the time of the Catholic Monarchs, pork came to be seen as a sure sign of faith in a land of half- and falsely-converted Moriscos and Jews, and so was the dominant use of lard {manteca} in detriment to olive oil, which began to be associated with plebes, peasants and people with suspicious blood lineages. As the Galician writer and gastronome, Julio Cambra put it, ‘Spanish cooking overflows with garlic and religious prejudices”.

Olive oil did not, however, lose its reputation as an efficacious health tonic. In the south and along the coast, olive oil continued as the dominant fat, yet it wasn’t until the late 19th century that Spanish cookery writers, notably Angel Muro in ‘El Practicón’, began to extol its virtues over lard.

So it’s all because of the sighing Moor that lost his kingdom that we keep going back to the one trustworthy Mexican restaurant with the moustached Mona Lisa.

Categories: culture, diary, food, health, race
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