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Southwestern American Cuisine

Updated on March 14, 2011

Southwestern American Cusine

Southwestern American cuisine literally means the cuisine from the states which are included in Southwestern America. Southwestern states in America includes Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, California, Nevada and Arizona.

This hub however is not a sweeping generalizations of the Southwestern cuisine per se of the states included. I would like just to point out certain things about Southwestern cuisine -- to my mind it is more a cuisine a combination of the native cuisine -- American Indian cuisine, mixed with the Mexican cuisine and the prevailing cuisine in the United States. This hub is more from the southwestern American cuisine in the borders along Arizona, Texas and new Mexico.

Like any other culture, cuisine in an area is a by product of the history in the area, intermingling of culture, culture transfer because of mass media and migration patterns. Mixed it with the native prevailing food culture and you have a new emerging food culture or cuisine.

Availability and spices, herbs and ingredients plus techniques in cooking make for the new emerging cuisine.

Southwestern American cuisine is an example of that. I live in Dallas area where Tex-Mex cuisine is prevalent here. To my mind, the neighboring states are same when it comes to cuisine.

Southwestern dishes

Southwestern dishes -- can be characterized as more on spices (chile) similar to the Mexican cuisines. Here in Dallas, there are Tex-Mex restaurants which is clearly a combination of Texas and Mexican cuisines. This is due to the fact that more and more people are migrating here in Texas from Mexico same as with other adjoining border states.

I would like to point out hat there are more choices now and combination of foods which caters to all people from all walks of life here in the Southwestern border states.

The use of corn dough, tortilla is an example of the influence of the Mayan cuisine -- South American cuisine uses corn and corn flour for various dishes. other examples are taquitos, and nachos.

The use of rice and beans -- beans are famous in the Southwestern regions and among South Americans and the migrants brought with them some practices of cooking beans and it is usually mixed with rice.

Usually when you see the word "con" meaning with like chili con carne or chili con queso. Chili means thick combination of stew with beans or grounded meat and carne means meat and queso is cheese.

When we say chile it means spicy like red pepper etc.

The use of salsa or sauce

Salsa is sauce meaning it can be also called dip -- mostly spicy. Fresh salsa in the image consists of tomatoes and chile.

Another dip is guacamole -- made from avocado (which is part of Mexican cuisine)

Salsa -- dip or suce usually spicy


Pizza is the creation of Italians but here in the Southwestern America, there are other variations, some pizza outlets like Pizza Patron caters to the taste of Mexicans, but of course other people here are also enjoying it. Other pizzas are Dominos, Pizza Hut and Papa Johns. There are small franchises of pizzas everywhere in the US catering to the diverse tastes of the people.

Pizza Patron pizza -- catering to the taste of Latinos and people who like the taste of it

Southwestern dishes is similar to Mexican cuisine

Chili con carne -- simply means stew and ingredients (spicy) and with ground beef -- carne is meat. The ingredients are usually onions, garlic and spicy jalapeno.

Chili con queso -- simply means spicy cheese -- a dip -- sometimes when you want to deep corn chips. cheese with spicy chile.

Burritos -- is a corn dough, fried and have a filling on it, usually rice, beans, meat and spices plus cream.

Rice and beans -- mostly in the Southwestern states or in South American they cooked rice with beans and with sauce

Chile relleno -- stuffed spicy with cheese, nuts, meat grounded. relleno means stuffed

Taquitos are small corn flour dough and with stuffed inside with beef or pork like lumpia in Filipino, rolls look like spring rolls etc

Tacos -- filling with a corn dough, the fillings can either be vegetables and ground beef, meat or chicken plus spices onions, garlic etc

Quesadilla -- I like this one, this is a Mexican food made of cheese and is stuffed inside a tortilla and cooked

Nachos -- chips tortillas that are mixed with cheese

Fajita -- grilled meat in tortilla -- mixed with onions and the red bell pepper. other people also puts lettuce and cream, tomato and guacamole.


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    • alexandriaruthk profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from US

      Yum! It is the best and right now I am hungry. Thanks.

    • Writer Fox profile image

      Writer Fox 

      6 years ago from the wadi near the little river

      I love Tex-Mex southwester cuisine the best! Especially nachos!

    • alexandriaruthk profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from US

      Hi Mick and mentalist, TEX Mex and Southwestern American cuisine are good, Thanks to you both,

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 

      9 years ago

      I do love it! Southwestern and Tex-Mex are always being reinvented and improved - or spiced differently.

    • Mentalist acer profile image

      Mentalist acer 

      9 years ago from A Voice in your Mind!

      I live near the border of Texas and know well of their spicy chili which the state is famous for.The Mexican resteraunts are excellent and also affordable!;)


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