Celebrating Mexican Food in Vancouver – Latin American Week’s Carnaval del Sol 2015 Recap

Mexican Food in Vancouver at Carnaval del Sol

A cloudy day didn’t prevent this event from becoming a big success

Just over a week ago Greater Vancouver rang in Latin American Week with Carnival del Sol 2015, along the False Creek waterfront near Telus World of Science. For those that don’t know about Carnival del Sol, the festival’s aim is to recreate the Latin American fiesta experience for those residing within and visiting the Lower Mainland of BC. Practically all Latin American cultures are represented at the festival, blending a cultural mix of music, dance, arts & crafts, and the highlight – food! The annual event intends to ensure that all citizens and visitors experience authentic Hispanic culture at its best.

El Comal has been so busy at our shop and deli, taking care of patrons and filling customer orders that we were not able to set up an official tent at the event, but we did send a representative out in the field to explore (and enjoy!) the festival firsthand and to note the Mexican influence on the affair. Tough gig, right? Below are a few fun photos, complete with captions, of the 2015 Carnaval del Sol.

Visual Highlights from Latin American Week’s Carnaval del Sol in Vancouver

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5 Other Ways to Eat Guacamole

Other Ways to Eat Guacamole

Good ol’ guacamole. This avocado based concoction has been around since its inception during the Aztec era in Mexico, finding its way onto the tables of practically every restaurant in North America today, sidling orders of nachos and other handheld Mexican or Tex-Mex bites. Noted for its creamy texture, rich taste, and health benefits this dip is surprisingly underestimated in its capacity to complement so many other dishes. Last month we delivered an article on alternative ways to eat salsa so to follow up today we take a look at unanticipated uses for one of North America’s other favorite condiments.

5 Ways to Eat Guacamole that You May Not Have Anticipated

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5 Common Misconceptions About Mexican Food

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One of the most misunderstood international cuisines is Mexican food. If you were to take a random “person on the street” poll in “anytown” Canada/U.S. and inquired about favorite Mexican dishes you’ll hear all sorts of comments about hard-shelled tacos and other items that show up in Old El Paso section of your local grocery chain. It is true that when many people consider Mexican food they are conjuring an image of a hybrid that has taken authenticity and watered it down as generations have become exposed to fast food chains and their Frankenstein-esque creations. To be fair, this happens to pretty much all international foods when they make landfall in Western civilization and there have been some delicious results because of it. That being said, it is important to note the difference between what is and what isn’t inherently Mexican food, while dismissing misnomers regarding one of the most popular regional cuisines in the world. As an authority on the topic we thought we’d provide those of you with a hunger for culinary knowledge with some insight into Mexican food by addressing its key misconceptions.

Five Misinterpretations of Authentic Mexican Cuisine

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5 Other Foods to Eat with Salsa

Other Foods to Eat with Salsa

Salsa is one of the most commonly found “pantry condiments” in North America. This of course is because the popularity of Mexican cuisine (in all of its forms, Tex-Mex hybrid or otherwise) continues to be on the rise, especially here in the Greater Vancouver area. That being said, too often that glass jar of salsa is regulated to the back corner cupboard, not seeing the light of day until your dining room table has called for the family’s favorite Mexican dish. We’re here to tell you that you need not wait until Taco-Tuesday (and the like) to take out and enjoy your salsas. There are many ways to use salsa with everyday foods that you may not have anticipated. Read further to forever alter the taste of common household dishes with an added kick of authentic Mexican salsa!

Five Ways to Use Salsa with Everyday Food Found Around Your Household’s Kitchen

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Corn vs Flour Tortillas – The Great Debate!

Corn vs Flour Tortillas

Tortillas are the cornerstone of many Mexican dishes. Many of you have tried your hand at making enchiladas, flautas, or tacos, yet got stumped in the Mexican food aisle of your local grocery store, stuck between the choice of corn or flour based tortillas. Is there a noticeable difference for those with a less discernible palate? You bet. But it comes down to more than just taste.

As Greater Vancouver’s “go to” Mexican food product supplier and deli we feel it is our duty to weigh-in on the debate over whether you should choose corn or flour tortillas for your next great “at home” Mexican feast.

Corn vs Flour Tortillas – Which is Better?

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The Rise of Mexican Cuisine in Vancouver BC

Mexican Cuisine in Vancouver

It wasn’t that long ago that access to authentic Mexican food in the Lower Mainland of BC was, well…inaccessible. There was the odd mom & pop shop dispersed about the region driven solely by word-of-mouth within the local community. However, maintaining such a business proved tricky for many, as public knowledge of these establishments didn’t quite keep up with burgeoning commercial real estate leases. That has changed.

Over the last decade the Mexican community in the Greater Vancouver area has grown, and with it the rise of authentic Mexican cuisine. All of a sudden (it seems) there is a Mexican food spot in practically every neighborhood. There are food trucks, brick and mortar taco stands, and full-fledged fine dining establishments dedicated to the culinary art of real Mexican food. The public is ecstatic. In the past, Lower Mainland residents didn’t know that they could demand authentic Mexican food, but now, with the visible growth in access to our regional delicacies, their demand has not only reared its head, it is downright ravenous. Foodies have taken to social media and spread the word about their favorite spots and their following has followed. Mexican eateries are now the norm, with owners managing successful businesses in the some of the most prime commercial real estate markets in the area. From downtown Vancouver to Burnaby to Whistler our southern (way down south) cuisine has hopped onto the plates and into the hearts of BC’s hungry public.
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