Regional Spotlight: Southwestern Tex-Mex

The Tex-Mex style of cuisine has become ubiquitous across the United States. As the name implies, Tex-Mex cuisine is a wonderful fusion of American and Mexican flavors and cooking styles. If you are a Tex-Mex enthusiast, you will enjoy eating the freshest, most authentic version of the cuisine surrounded by the atmosphere and scenery it was created in.

Tex-Mex began with the “chili queens” of San Antonio, who in the late 1800s would sell chili con carne and other Tex-Mex dishes in the streets. The plazas would fill with people looking for local food as wandering musicians gave a sense of festivity to the atmosphere. San Antonio became the epicenter of Tex-Mex food following the influence of the chili queens. Many high-quality Tex-Mex restaurants call the area home.

The blend of cultures in the Southwestern United States had an amazing influence on the cuisine of the region. The arid region is heralded for its rugged history.  Native Americans, cowboys after the manifest destiny and Hispanics have all left their mark on the region. The ranching tradition bonded Southern Texas and Northern Mexico, allowing for an easy blend across the border. The unique culture is reason alone to visit the region.

Tex-Mex is far different from traditional Mexican food. It is cheesier, meatier, and much bigger. Chimichangas are a great example of a Tex-Mex original. A hefty burrito is filled with rice, cheese and meat, and then fried.  Nachos and fajitas are other Tex-Mex creations that have swept the states. While some people assume these are authentic Mexican dishes, they were actually created in the U.S. to please American palates.

This style of cuisine has spiked in popularity across the globe. Europe, Bangkok, Buenos Aires and Abu Dhabi have all embraced the quick and hearty Tex-Mex cuisine and countless fast food restaurants have adopted the style. While you may be able to enjoy Tex-Mex anywhere, you cannot get the authenticity that comes from restaurants in the Tex-Mex region.

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