I seriously think you guys are lovely and all, but can you please — PLEEEEASE — not call your “swirl of roasted corn caramel, lime zest, sea salt, and smokey salsa verde on the side” concoction an ice-cream taco?
See? I’m getting old and can die from a heart attack real soon.
As if Taco Bell’s efforts to sell you “make-believe” Mexican food weren’t enough, Pillsbury is now peddling the Chicken Taco Grande Ring, yet another American-made concoction that will make sure your children will grow up with a twisted idea of what my people (i.e. The Mexicans) really eat.
According to my sources (i.e. my Brooklyn Special Taco Correspondent) there’s even a TV commercial of this thing airing on prime time, declaring “it’s time for the taco to come out of its shell.”
Well, I have news for you, Pillsbury: It’s not time for anything. This “thing” is not even a taco, so Stop. This. Now.
No matter how many bizarre holidays Americans come up with, Cinco de Mayo will forever be my favorite one. And not only because it’s an excuse to drink all day and yell ¡Viva México! while thinking it’s our celebration of Independence (it’s not.) But it is also the time of year that brings out the stupidest most creative marketing brains to sell Americans everything, from DIY printable fiesta kits and taquito shooters (whatever that is,) to senseless drink mixes, “ethnic food” and even life-size cardboard Mexicans as scene setters.
This time around, though, in honor of that amazing marketing took known as Twitter, I’ve put together a few tweets making their way to my timeline.
NOTE: We’re still a full week away from the actual fiesta and this list will be updated in the following days, but let’s get to it right away, shall we?
Last but not least, the King of Ruining Mexican Food, Taco Bell, has already announced plans to introduce a new hot sauce on Cinco de Mayo called Diablo. The sauce, says Taco Bell, will only be available for a limited time and it’s made with a variety of peppers, including ají panca, chipotle and chili. Here it is, in all its GIF glory.
From this blog’s London correspondent (formerly this blog’s West Coast correspondent) come Britain’s “Cool,” gluten-free Hey Ho to Mexico “tortillas,” which is apparently what the Brits call any corn-based produce that comes packaged in a plastic bag featuring pyramids and sombreros.
These are not your regular [fake] tortillas, mind you, these “bring you a true taste of Mexico,” because as everyone knows, there is only one.
Per the local press, more than 100 McDonald’s establishments in Venezuela have pretty much taken off French fries from their combos, claiming a nationwide shortage of potatoes.
But Venezuelans shouldn’t despair. After all, fries are being replaced by a “Bolivarian menu,” which features yuquitas, a good-enough replacement based on the ubiquitous, certainly more affordable yuca, — and hopefully less deadly than the chemically-altered McDonald’s papitas.
As my grandmother used to say: No sólo de papas fritas vive el hombre. So, stop complaining, have some yuquitas.
There is nothing more satisfying than lying down on your sofa with People en español a good piece of literature and come face to face with the improbable: A two-page commercial for SPAM jalapeño, featuring an enlarged photo of what SPAM thinks is Mexican food.
The ad -which takes a full-page plus a one-third vertical in the April 2014 issue of People en español, includes everything you’d come to expect from made-believe Mexican food advertisements in the U.S., namely a jalapeño, a lime, a couple of plastic cactai and -what else?- a photo of Sir Can-A-Lot proudly shaking a pair of maracas.
What’s more puzzling to me, though is: Why is this ad in English and… do they really think my people would go for it?
For the uninitiated, a Mexican “cockteleria” is not really a place where you sip cocktails; instead, it is ground zero for shrimp, oysters, mussels, squid and other seafood deliciousness… and if you can have all this with a bit of social justice, all the better.
If you thought Fiesta Nacho Cheese, Kick-It-Up a Nacho or Mexican-style chicken tortilla soups were enough to satisfy the demanding palate of my people (i.e. Hispanics,) think again. The venerable Campbell Soup Company, hoping to reverse a “soup slump,” is ready to accelerate its Hispanic-themed and Hispanic-targeted canned soups and other so-called food products.
But don’t think that throwing in some queso and tortillas will be enough to attract more U.S. Hispanics. According to this article in Food Business News, the company “has added dual-language packaging for some of its products,” presumably in a similar way they’ve done with the “French” language.
Alas, there was no mention in such article about how “Fiesta Vegetable” became Fiesta de légumes in “French” but I guess that’s material for a future post.
Argentinian “chef” Maru Botana this week came under fire by my people (i.e. The Mexicans) after she attempted to do something Argentinians should never, ever, do: prepare Mexican food.
“Botana,” which is Spanish for “snack” and thus very likely not her real name, took to national television in Argentina to demonstrate how to prepare “real Mexican tacos,” which was nothing but a bizarre concoction of eggplant, green peas, chicken, cherry tomatoes and hard boiled eggs wrapped up in something she thinks is a home-made tortilla.
The offending recipe reaches its peak when Ms. Botana decides to place the tortilla maker actually on the burner, quickly transitioning her endeavor from a cooking parody to just plain disaster.
Below is a small taste of the debacle. For the complete mess tutorial of how NOT to make tacos, go here: