Borracha: 10 Fascinating Facts About Mexican Food

Borracha: 10 Fascinating Facts About Mexican Food

Mexican Food Facts

At Borracha Mexican Cantina, we’re committed to offering the best cantina-style Mexican cuisine possible. Our culinary stylings are reverent to tradition, yet always feature a creative or unique twist that makes it all our own.

While everyone knows that Mexican food is delicious, there may be some things about Mexican food that you don’t know. Here are 10 fascinating facts about one of the most internationally beloved styles of cuisine. They’re bound to help you work up an appetite!

  1. Burritos are named after donkeys.

    Bet you didn’t know that the word burrito translates as “little donkey”. It’s a diminutive of the Spanish word burro, which means donkey.

Mexican food at borracha Mexican cantina in Henderson, nv

(Source: Borracha Mexican Cantina)

Don’t fear: this doesn’t mean that burritos include donkey as an ingredient. Rather, it’s a visual play, inspired by how the rolled tortilla and tucked-in ends resemble the shape and look of rolled bedding or packs often carried on the donkey’s saddle. This makes sense in terms of the era when burritos evolved. While the origins of the burrito are hazy, it’s likely that it developed as an easily transportable food favored by farm or field workers in the late 1800s.

  1. Tomatoes are from Mexico.

    While many associate tomatoes most strongly with Italian cuisine, they were actually first cultivated as a food in Mexico.

borracha Mexican cantina in henderson nevada steak taco, carnitas taco, chicken taco

(Source: Borracha Mexican Cantina)

The word tomato comes from the Spanish word tomate, which is derived from the Aztec word tomatl. According to Smithsonian, the first tomatoes are said to have been grown in South America, but never domesticated. It wasn’t until farmers in what is now Mexico began cultivating tomato crops that they were actually used as food.

At Borracha, tomatoes are plentiful on our menu, featured in our Smoked Tomato and Tortilla Soup, our addictive pico de gallo, and in several other dishes.

  1. Margaritas are named after flowers.

    Guess what? Margarita means “daisy”. As it turns out, this translation may give a clue as to where the drink came from.

borracha Mexican cantina inside green valley ranch in Henderson Nevada mango margarita, strawberry margarita, original margarita

(Source: Borracha Mexican Cantina)

First, there was a cocktail called the Daisy, which preceded the Margarita by as many as 50 years. The Daisy was a sweet-tart cocktail with spirits, simple syrup, and a sour mix. It’s seen as a direct predecessor to the Sidecar cocktail (which includes cognac and lemon) and the Margarita.

At Borracha, you’ll love the many Margaritas on our menu, which are just $7 during our epic Happy Hour, which takes place Monday through Friday from 4-6pm!

  1. Tequila’s origin matters.

    When it comes to wine and spirits, an “appellation” means that the item in question has a specific place of origin. Appellations are most strongly associated with spirits/wines like Champagne, Cognac, and Scotch, but you should include tequila in that list, too! To officially be called tequila, the spirit must be produced in one of five regions in Mexico, and made from the blue agave plant.

tequila shots at borracha Mexican cantina inside green valley ranch casino

(Source: Borracha Mexican Cantina)

If you love tequila, you’re in luck when you visit Borracha: our menu boasts an incredible roster of offerings, ranging from un-aged Blanco tequila to Reposado, Anejo, and Especial varieties.

  1. Enchilada means “chile included”.

    Ever wonder about where the fun-to-say but funny-sounding word “enchilada” came from? Turns out, it comes from the Spanish word enchilar, which indicates that chile is added to an item.

henderson mexican restaurant

(Source: Borracha Mexican Cantina)

Over time, the word enchilada has entered the public sphere in idiomatic form as well. If you’ve ever heard the phrase “the whole enchilada,” it’s likely that this term comes from the fact that enchiladas (the food) can be stuffed with any number of ingredients, and therefore can pack quite a bit into a very small unit.

  1. There’s not just one type of taco.

    There are actually several types of tacos. At Borracha, we have two types to get to know and love: Street tacos and traditional tacos. So what’s the dif?

all you can eat tacos at borracha Mexican cantina in Henderson nevada

(Source: Borracha Mexican Cantina)

Street tacos are smaller, and an order will typically include a few tacos. They are made with a soft tortilla, then wrapped in a second one to keep things clean and contained. At Borracha, our street tacos can be ordered with achiote chicken, al pastor pork, and carne asada steak.

Traditional tacos are larger in scale. They often feature a hard / crispy shell. At Borracha, our traditional taco offerings include al pastor chicken, carne asada steak, and mahi mahi.

  1. Tortilla chips were popularized in the US.

    While they’re considered a standard offering in Mexican restaurants, those triangle-shaped portions of pure snack magic were actually dreamed up north of the border.

henderson mexican food

(Source: Borracha Mexican Cantina)

Tortilla chips are said to have been popularized in the 1940s by a woman named Rebecca Webb Carranza. She wanted to make use of the misshapen tortillas that were otherwise discarded at the automated tortilla machine that she used at her family’s Mexican deli/tortilla factory in Los Angeles. Now that’s a genius invention!

  1. There’s a unique set of tools required for Mexican cooking.

    While Mexican cooking doesn’t require a ton of tools, the tools it does require are pretty specific.

One is the tortilla press, which is composed of two flat plates that are hinged together. It’s this press that allows balls of dough to be formed into perfectly flat, even tortillas.

Another is the comal, which is a type of side-less skillet used to cook tortillas and other items that don’t require oil (as oil would slop over the edges and get messy).

Another must-have in the Mexican kitchen? A molcajete and tejolote, which is a specific type of a mortar and pestle made of volcanic rock, which is used to grind herbs and spices and sometimes used to make guacamole as well.

  1. In Mexico, your quesadilla might not even have cheese.

    For most people stateside, the entire reason to order a quesadilla is all the delicious melty cheese. But in parts of Mexico, quesadillas don’t rely so heavily on cheese. The main ingredient might be something like beef, chicken, or pork.


(Source: Borracha Mexican Cantina)

At Borracha, our quesadilla does include cheese, as well as arbol salsa, Cholula sauce, and all the fixings you love. You can add chicken or steak!

  1. Mexican desserts are second to none.

    When most people think about Mexican food, they think of savory flavors like salsa, guacamole, and flavorful meats in tacos. But there are plenty of tempting traditional Mexican desserts to enjoy, too!

borracha Mexican cantina in henderson nevada dessert menu including churro sandwich

(Source: Borracha Mexican Cantina)

At Borracha, we offer plenty of desserts, both traditional and with a twist.

If you love Tres Leches Cake, you’ll adore our version, which is served with whipped cream (because, why not?).

Or, maybe you’ll be tempted by our decadent take on churros. In the Borracha kitchen, one of our most popular dessert offerings is the Cinnamon Churro Ice Cream Sandwich, which is served with vanilla gelato in the center. OMG delicious!

We also offer Flan, Fried Ice Cream, and a delectable and unexpected Frosted Flake Rice Pudding.

Conclusion: Mexican food offers many delicious flavors…and many fascinating stories! At Borracha Mexican Cantina, we’re proud to offer up some of the most crave-worthy Mexican fare in the Green Valley Ranch, in a unique and welcoming atmosphere. We hope to see you soon!

Which fact about Mexican food surprised you?