One of the popular comfort foods in Mexico is the traditional pozole, a dish of hominy cooked with garlic, pork garnished with onions, salsas, chiles, avocado, cabbage and lettuce. As such, this Mexican dish has so much variations, it can taste different from one place to another.
Basically, there are three primary types of pozole: white (blanco), red (rojo), and green (verde). These variations have slightly different ingredients, which also make their taste vary in subtle ways.
What Exactly is a Hominy Dish?
Hominy as the primary ingredient in pozole dishes refers to the shelled, dried corn that puffed up after being soaked in water with lime. Hominy has a chewy texture and has the same flavor of a corn tortilla.
Traditional pozole is a huge favorite in Mexico and is often enjoyed in special occasions as fares for Christmas, Independence Day and wedding celebrations. Moreover, it is also considered as a comfort food among Mexicans because of the warmth it gives from both inside and out.
Yet this well loved dish actually has a dark history that dates back to the time when Mexico was still the land of the ancient Aztec civilization.
Ancient Mexican Pozole: The Dark History of a Popular Comfort Food
Just like many Mexican dishes, pozole came from the indineous Nahuatl of the ancient Aztec empire but with a huge difference. It was a time when Aztecs considered corn as a sacred plant created by humans. During the ancient times, this hominy dish was cooked only on special occasions.
The ancient original pozole also used special meat ingredients, specifically human meat derived from prisoners who were sacrificed in a rite that required the carving out of the heart. The sacrificial rites and the cannibalistic eating behavuor ended only after the Spanish conquistadors came into power during the 1500’s. Cooking pozole thereafter replaced the use of human meat ingredient with pork as cannibalism was strictly forbidden.