In America, the melting pot of the world, people come across different backgrounds and cultures daily. This melting pot is usually signified with food. America integrates Chinese, Mexican, Thai, Italian, Jamaican and other cultural restaurants for the comfort of internationals and the expansion of the American mind.
However, the attempt to recreate these non-American recipes can sometimes fall short.
“It’s not that it tastes bad; it just doesn’t taste like home,” stated Ariadne Porras, ORU international student from Mexico. “I feel the reason is because they don’t have access to those ingredients that make the recipe taste the way it’s supposed to.”
Porras is currently a junior majoring in dance at ORU. One of her favorite things about going home for break is the authentic Mexican food her mother cooks. Porras jotted down a cheap and quick recipe her mother experimented with while she was in college.
Porras’s mother went to college from 1984 to 1987 and studied social work. However, she did not have the most money and had to stick to a strict budget. She had the brilliant idea to make a “nice” and cheap meal.
She adapted an original Mexican recipe called Enfrijoladas. The recipe is below.
Fry corn tortillas (handmade by Esquer)
Put frijoles refritos (refried beans) inside the tortilla
Fold the tortilla in half
Put cheese inside (called panela)
Optional: add avocado and salsa casera
If there is a student on a budget and wanting a meal other than saga, they can make this simple cheap recipe in their dorm.
The recipe is great for a Saturday or Sunday dinner or whenever you want something ethnic and quick to make. Porras mentioned that her mom still cooks Enfrijoladas to this day.
“For Mexican food, it’s not just the recipe that makes the food,” shared Porras. “It’s the one who makes it and what you put in it, the little secrets that each family has for those traditional dishes.”