Besides friends and family, the thing expats like myself miss the most about our home countries is the food. Prior to returning, I made a huge list of foods I missed that I hope to showcase as I systematically eat my way through America. Some are homemade Mexican meals, some are from my favorite chain restaurants, and hopefully, I’ll have an In-N-Out burger or some very greasy American Chinese food along the way. Enjoy!
#1 – Menudo
Menudo is a very well known dish among Mexicans, but it’s usually reserved for special occasions such as a birthday party or a holiday. For this reason, it is probably not something you are very familiar with unless you have Mexican friends. Restaurants might have it on weekends, since you really need to make big pot to make it worthwhile.
Menudo is a chili pepper based broth with the main ingredient being beef stomach tripe. The meat has a very unique texture as it is kind of stringy and chewy, but at the same time, very soft. If you are familiar with cow tongue, it is similar to that in taste and texture. Besides stomach, some people (such as my mom) put in chopped up cow feet. This meat is softer, but has many bones and can be very sticky if you touch it with your hands (similar to Korean Yeongol). You top it all off with lime, onions, and “menudo mix,” which is oregano and crushed chili peppers.
My mom knows that menudo, along with enchiladas are my two favorite Mexican meals. She had a huge pot of this wonderfully salty soup waiting when I arrived from the airport. I love that even when you run out of meat, the broth itself is so rich in flavor! My mouth is watering, I’m going to take that last bowl right now before someone takes it!