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Spanish Lesson: El Maíz Y La Cocina Mexicana

Learn about Mexico’s diverse food offerings. Hope you’re hungry!
Spanish Lesson: El Maíz Y La Cocina Mexicana

Learning Spanish is about much more than memorizing vocabulary. In each Spanish Lesson, we explore a part of the vast Spanish-speaking world with texts designed for beginner (A2) Spanish learners. Reading the following means you’re able to…

  • order food or drink using basic expressions.

Read on to learn about el maíz y la cocina mexicana. And if you get stuck on any of the bolded terms, you can scroll down to la lista de vocabulario, which will guide you along. You can also listen along to a recording of the story, read by a native Spanish speaker.

El Maíz y la Cocina Mexicana

El maíz es el ingrediente más importante de la cocina mexicana. ¿Sabes que hay más de 700 maneras diferentes de preparar platillos y bebidas con maíz? En este artículo hablamos de los tacos y el atole. Los tacos y el atole se preparan desde los tiempos prehispánicos, y todavía se disfrutan hoy en día en México.

Para hablar de los tacos, necesitamos hablar de las tortillas. Las tortillas son un elemento muy importante en la cocina mexicana. Una tortilla tiene forma redonda y está hecha de masa de maíz. Las tortillas son la base para otros platillos, como los tacos. Los tacos son el platillo mexicano más popular en el mundo. Un taco es una tortilla que se dobla o se enrolla para contener el relleno. El relleno puede ser muy variado: carne, pescado, pollo. También hay opciones vegetarianas como frijoles, queso, papas o champiñones.

El atole es una bebida hecha con masa de maíz y agua o leche. Usualmente se prepara con otros ingredientes, como frutas o especias. Las frutas más populares son la guayaba o la fresa. El chocolate, la canela o la vainilla son otros ingredientes favoritos.

El maíz es el corazón de la comida mexicana, y se encuentra en muchos otros platillos como las enchiladas, los sopes, las tostadas, las gorditas

Lista de vocabulario — Vocabulary list

Palabras temáticas — Thematic words

  • el maíz — the corn
  • el ingrediente — the ingredient
  • el platillo — the dish
  • la bebida — the drink
  • la base — the basis
  • el relleno — the filling
  • la carne — the meat
  • el pescado — the fish
  • el pollo — the chicken
  • vegetariano, vegetariana — vegetarian
  • los frijoles — the beans
  • el queso — the cheese
  • las papas — the potatoes
  • los champiñones — the mushrooms
  • la masa de maíz — the corn dough
  • el agua — the water
  • la leche — the milk
  • las frutas — the fruits
  • las especias — the spices
  • la guayaba — the guava
  • la fresa — the strawberry
  • la canela — the cinnamon
  • la vainilla — the vanilla
  • el corazón — the heart

Expresiones — Expressions

  • la cocina mexicana — Mexican cuisine
  • la comida mexicana — Mexican food
  • hoy en día — today

Verbos — Verbs

En presente — In the present

  • se disfrutan — they are enjoyed
  • se dobla — it is folded
  • se enrolla — it is rolled
  • se prepara — it is prepared
  • se encuentra — it is found

En infinitivo — In the infinitive

  • hablar de — to talk about
  • contener — to contain

Elementos culturales — Cultural elements

  • la tortilla — a thin disc made of corn flour.
  • el taco — a tortilla filled with meat or veggies and then rolled.
  • el atole — a drink made from corn flour, water or milk, and spices or fruit. 
  • los tiempos prehispánicos — the pre-Columbian era, indicating the time before Spanish colonization.
  • las enchiladas — a typical dish made with different kinds of fillings wrapped inside a corn tortilla and covered in sauce.
  • los sopes — small, thick tortillas topped with vegetables, cheese or meat. You can also add sour cream and shredded cheese.
  • las tostadas — literally meaning “toasted,” it is, as its name indicates, a toasted tortilla, where you add other toppings such as refried beans or cheese.
  • las gorditas — a food made of thick corn dough and filled with vegetables, cheese or meat. Sour cream and shredded cheese are popular additions.
Want to learn more Spanish?
Rita Santoyo
Rita was born in Mexico City. After earning her doctorate in philosophy, she moved to Berlin in search of new challenges. She loves living in this city, but she doesn’t deny that she misses her dogs and some good chilaquiles verdes. Her two biggest passions are philosophy and teaching languages. She spends her free time reading and playing video games.
Rita was born in Mexico City. After earning her doctorate in philosophy, she moved to Berlin in search of new challenges. She loves living in this city, but she doesn’t deny that she misses her dogs and some good chilaquiles verdes. Her two biggest passions are philosophy and teaching languages. She spends her free time reading and playing video games.

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