Cilantro is a key ingredient in Mexican cooking as well as most of the World. It is a native aromatic herb from Southeast Asia and North Africa, with an herbaceous flavor and multiple health benefits. It has anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties (prevents the growth of microorganisms which can cause infections), it has a diuretic effect on the body, and is very rich in vitamin C and K.
Is also known as “Flowering Mexican Cilantro”. The leaves are usually used as a garnish and the seeds are sometimes used in the production of certain types of beer and it is also one of the key ingredients when making Gin. Cilantro Macho also has anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties, and its essential oils help the digestive process. Mexican families love growing it in the backyard because it attracts butterflies.
Jalapeño peppers are a small to medium sized hot pepper, (5cm to 10cm). Jalapeno peppers are a good source of vitamins A, B6, E and K. They are at the lower end (2500 to 8000) of the SHU (Scoville Heat Unit) which measures the amount of heat a pepper has. Smoked jalapeños are known as Chipotle peppers. Red jalapeños are the main ingredient in “Siracha”.
The Poblano is a mild chile native to the state of Puebla, Mexico. Dried, it is called ancho or chile ancho, from the Spanish word wide. Stuffed with fresh or roasted fillings is a popular way to prepare the Stuffed Poblano Peppers dish.
Jicama has been commonly referred to as “yam bean”, Mexican turnip or Mexican potato. It’s an edible root whose flavor resembles an Asian pear. It is peeled and eaten raw, mostly in slaws and salads. It’s used as a crunchy topping for tacos. Tiny ones are given as gifts to children in Mexico at Christmas time.
The Tomatillo, also known as Mexican husk tomato, is a small green, spherical fruit. They are always husked, roasted or boiled, blended with chiles, herbs and spices to make an array of salsas. Tomatillos pair well with all varieties of proteins. We sell both husked and peeled to accommodate the customer’s needs.
This product is similar to husk tomatillo, but it has no peel.
Flat leaf parsley, also known as “Italian Parsley,” is a popular herb all around the World. Here in America, we use it in soups and stews and as a finishing herb. In Italy it is used in many tomato-based dishes. In the Middle East it is the main ingredient in “Tabouleh” a popular salad. The Spanish finish most of their dishes with a sprinkling of chopped flat leaf parsley; like the classic “Gambas al Ajillo”.
The Hass Avocado is the World’s most popular avocado. Legend has it that in 1920 Postman and budding Horticulturist, Rudolph Hass, mistakenly bought a hybrid seedling avocado tree in Mexico and planted it in Temecula, California. His “Hass” avocado took time to ripen and had a creamier and nuttier flavor than anything up till then. Although Mexico is the main producer, many other countries like Colombia and Peru have begun to grow, ship and pack Hass avocados commercially.
Limes are a popular citrus fruit known for the high acidity level of their juice. They are perfect for marinating meats, poultry or seafood. Limes are popular in cocktails like Mojitos, Moscow Mules, Pisco Sours and Brazil’s national cocktail the Caipirinha. Look for limes that have a deep green hue and seem heavier than they appear, assuring plenty of juice. We import them from Mexico, Colombia and Ecuador.
Red radishes are an edible root vegetable that are consumed around the World. There are many varieties in the Brassicaceae family, but the red radish is the most popular by far. They are used in salads or as a crunchy topping for tacos or spicy Latin soups and stews. Radishes have many medicinal uses and have been linked to aiding respiratory issues. They are grown all over, but we import them from Mexico and sometimes Canada.
Roma tomato also known as Plum Tomato is a variety of tomato that is mostly used to make sauces or tomato paste. It is rich in flavor and has fewer number of seeds when compared to other varieties.
Commercially grown mostly in Mexico, it is available all year long.
Aloe Vera is a variety of the succulent plants of the genus Aloe. The gel inside the aloe vera leaves has long been used to treat sunburned skin. Although that gel is extremely bitter it is ingested in small amounts. In Latin American countries the aloe gel is mixed with fresh fruit juice and aids in digestion and is said to help treat ulcers and kidney stones.
Celery is a marshland plant that is popular in most cultures and has been used for centuries. It is essential as a base in soups and stews. The French use celery in the base “Mire Poix” which also includes diced onions and carrots. Celery is also eaten raw and is helpful in weight management. The leaves of the celery are widely used as an herb and included in salads. Whether it’s seafood salad or chicken salad, diced celery is a must.
Red (or purple) Beets are a root vegetable that are roasted, pickled and juiced. They are great stimulants for the immune system as well as an important source of vitamin C, fiber, potassium and magnesium. Beet soup (Borsht) is popular in Eastern Europe. Beet juice is used to color pickled onions. We like them roasted and served with local goat cheese and drizzled with local honey.
The Broccoli is a plant of the Brassicaceae family. It is green and it may be consumed raw or cooked. Broccoli is great source of vitamin C and vitamin K. Broccoli is a staple in Asian cuisine. It is slowly working its way into Latin cuisine. Broccoli is popular at steakhouses around the World. Who among us doesn’t love creamy Broccoli Cheddar soup? We import broccoli from Mexico. Commercially it is packed in 14ct and 18ct bunches. More recently, broccoli crowns and florets have grown in popularity.
Carrots are root vegetables usually orange in color although other colors do exist (yellow and purple). They are rich with beta-carotene, and they are proven to help maintain one’s sight and skin healthy. Carrots also aid with the cardiovascular system, the digestive system and diabetes management. Carrots became more popular during times of depression and famine as they are easier to grow and harvest than the most popular root vegetable the potato.
Epazote is an herb native to Mexico and Central America. It has an extremely funky smell and taste in its raw state. When it is cooked, especially traditionally with beans, it takes on an unmistakable delicious flavor. It is added to dishes that have mushrooms or cheese in them. Medicinally it is used for digestive purposes.
Jackfruit or Yaka (indigenous name) is a variety of the fig tree, mulberry, and breadfruit family. It originally comes from the region between the Western Ghats of Southern Asia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and the tropical rainforests of the Philippines, Indonesia, and Malaysia. It grows from stems on the outside of the tree. It has been said that Jackfruit has five flavors as this giant fruit ripens differently and sugar content varies inside the fruit itself. The tastiest parts are like “Juicy Fruit” gum for lack of a better description. Certainly, one of the most exotic fruits one can eat.
Kabocha squash is a Japanese variety hard squash that has grown in popularity in the Latin community over the last 30 years. It has a nutty flavor like calabaza squash, but it is heartier. Kabocha squash can be used in soups and stews or baked and served on its own with butter. The Japanese make a traditional soup with miso paste and serve it inside the hollow shell of the Kabocha.
White onions are essential in Mexican cooking; Moreso than yellow or red. White onions have that bite, that strong onion flavor that compliments salsas and salads that define the flavor of Mexico. White onions are used in the ever popular “Pico de Gallo” and used alongside cilantro and sometimes red radishes as a crunchy topping to your taco. They are similar in flavor to the “traditional” yellow globe onion of the US.
Nopal is the leaves of the cactus plant. In Mexico the thorns are removed, the leaf is diced or sliced and cooked in a variety of ways. In Oaxaca, it is said that they will turn down a sirloin steak to eat a nopal steak with onions. It has a gelatinous texture and a flavor like okra.
Also known as “Red Prickly Pear” it is the fruit of the nopal cactus. They come in a variety of colors, but red is the most prized for its taste. It can be peeled and eaten raw on its own or in fruit salads. Recently it has become a popular juiced item. It is an excellent source of vitamin c, magnesium and calcium.
The Green Cactus Pear is not as sweet as its cousin the red variety but is also popular all-over Latin America. It too has many vitamins and minerals. They can be used in jellies and jams.