I believe there are foods that come embedded in our DNA because our ancestors have consumed them for thousands of years. You would recognize those foods even if you had never tried them before. Does it sound crazy? Maybe. But when I eat certain Mexican dishes it feels like I’m not only satisfying a physiological need, but that I’m being part of something bigger. That I’m part of a culinary ritual that started many generations ago and was carefully handed down to the cocineras (cooks) of today.
One of the dishes that makes me feel this way is pozole. For the past weeks I’ve been writing about Mexico’s most important crop, maize, and pozole is just the perfect dish to wrap up this journey. Pozole, from the Nahuatl potzolli which means foamy, is a soup or stew that was a ceremonial dish in pre-Hispanic Mexico. Pozole is made with nixtamalized cacahuazintle corn, a variety of corn with large, tough kernels.