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What are the influences on Honduras Cuisine?
Food cuisine and preparation depends entirely on culture and indigenous products in the certain region of interest. Honduras is a country inhabited by people with different cultures. The country is rich in food productivity and diversity too. Due to this, this is a combination of various food varieties from different cultures across the country. The categories of meals include meat, vegetables, salads, soup and drinks among others. Fruits such as mangoes, coconuts, pineapples, bananas, plantains and guavas are in huge supply. The people of Honduras rely more on serving unprocessed products to retain health among the consumers. Their food, popularly referred as cuisine is prepared and cooked in different ways. Several factors influence how the people of Honduras prepare their cuisine. This report evaluates the influences on Honduras cuisine.
The diversity of culture in the different regions of Honduran has influenced the variability of the foods available and the methods of preparation. Basically, the inhabitants of Honduran comprises of mestizo – which is the largest group having Amerindian and Europeans that form 90%, pure Amerindian 7%, blacks – combination of Garifuna and Bay Islanders 2% and whites 1%. The groups live in different areas and their cultures differ, a factor that influences Honduran cuisine. Owing to regionalism, the food variety changes and can be categorized based on three regions. First category is food of the Northern Honduras prepared on the basis of Garifuna culture. Their food comprises of cooked ripe or green plantains in the form of machuca where coconut is added to the smashed plantain among other ingredients, cassava is popular prepared in the form of thin bread, Miskito and creole (Fandom, p3). Additionally, they consume more of wheat instead of maize flour that is used to prepare baleadas, iguna soup is also commonly used with a belief that it cures hangovers.
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The Southern Honduras is occupied by mestizo and the area has active farming activities. Due to the huge production of livestock products like beef, pork, dairy and fishing activities, their food is mainly based on animal products. Sea food is common made from crab, fish, shrimp and turtle eggs. Besides, there is plenty of farm produce such as fruits (melons, sugarcanes mangoes and pineapples. Food crops like beans, pumpkins and root crops such as tortillas are common in preparation of flavored dishes involving one or more varieties. The central Honduras is characterized by high variety; food produced from the and south is taken to the central part hence their combination is higher. The variability of foods available include: chicken soup, seafood soup, tustacas, bagels, tamales, fried fish or chicken or pork served with rice, montucas, salad fruits or vegetables, plantains, beans and tapado among others.
Another factor which influences Honduras cuisine is the festivals. Gastronomical is a famous typical festival among the people of Honduras. It is celebrated in every month of June in El Paraiso. The city culture is normally promoted during the occasion of festival period. People meet to enjoy their traditional food among Honduras as the main goal of holding the event. Moreover, people enjoy integrating traditional dances and music during the occasion. In addition, the largest percentage of Honduras population is Catholic faith and therefore all the church events and festivals related to the church are very important to the faithful believers (Great Honduran food p2). Consequently, there are frequent feasts and celebrations by people in different parts of the cities or villages who converge together to fulfill the requirements of their faith. During these celebrations, a variety of food types is usually integrated for people to eat.
Religion also influences the cuisine based on the events of Honduras. Most of the inhabitants are Christians and owing to this fact, there are common celebrations that take place across the people of Honduras. The main one that is considered to be the most important is Christmas holiday. During this season, Christians prepare tamales regularly in various varieties referred as nacatamales. This involves food preparation through filling banana leaves with rice and meat. Another traditional meal that is prepared during the holy week of Christmas is chilate. Besides, torrejas is prepared and it appears like French toast that has been simmered in juice derived from sugarcane mixed with spices, mainly cloves and cinnamon. The ready torrejas is a common dessert that that is served warm after the main meal.
The preparation and cooking method used has influence on the cuisine. Normally, there are special requirements for preparation of each ingredient and subsequently preparation differs too. In most cases, fish, pork and chicken are normally deep fried. However, there are other ways of preparing and cooking the same products using different means and ingredients such as boiling with garlic and lemon water as the spices (Safari the Globe, p1). Either of the approach will give a unique meal based on the method used and the customers will have the free will to choose. Altering the usual combinations makes the meals look and taste better such as integrating beans based meals with coconut milk. The preparation method does not differ much although the prepared raw food has various options of cooking like roasting, frying and boiling. Depending on the method chosen, the output and taste of food will be different as well.
Equipment used for cooking will influence the nature of cuisine. The people of Honduran generally rely on the old basic cooking equipment. The use of more sophisticated cookeries like modern ovens has not been adapted by the chefs partly due to the prices associated with them and due to necessity of preserving the culture and traditions as well. As a result, they rely on the most basic cookeries such as pans, adobe ovens and pots. The most common source of cooking energy is firewood and charcoal, or other tree based products like saw dust or wood chips. The equipment used for cooking will determine the cooking method as well (Fandom, p1). For example, boiling is usually associated with pots while pans are the most ideal for frying. Therefore, same food cooked through different cookeries will have differing unique taste depending on what the consumer may wish to eat.
The diversity of the available foods has contributed to the availability of a wide range of dishes that can be served. Cuisine of Honduran has been made possible due to the richness of resources; foods, fruits, meat and spices. This variability facilitates the people of Honduran to be able to prepare, cook and serve varied meals. It is probable to cook pork with all the necessary spices because they are available and serve it with any other type of food, vegetables, salads and even fruits because they are available and in plenty of supply. Other people in various parts of the world may be willing to have such diversity but it is not available. Further, others may even have more knowledge on how to cook such meals but the food may not be readily available in varieties to give the unique combination.
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Diverseness in Honduras consists of the African, carribean and Spanish cuisine blended with indigenous ones. The people of Honduras rely more on serving unprocessed products to retain health among the consumers. Their food, popularly referred as cuisine is prepared and cooked in different ways. Several factors influence how the people of Honduras prepare their cuisine. The preparation and cooking method used has influence on the cuisine. Normally, there are special requirements for preparation of each ingredient and subsequently preparation differs too. In most cases, fish, pork and chicken are normally deep fried. However, there are other ways of preparing and cooking the same products using different means and ingredients such as boiling with garlic and lemon water as the spices. Taking look at the different factors to Honduras cuisine, its safe to conclude that food varies depending on various beliefs, cultures and way of life. Honduras is more of a Caribbean country and therefore, most of the recipes are based and integrated with the Caribbean touch. The preparation method does not differ much although the prepared raw food has various options of cooking like roasting, frying and boiling. Depending on the method chosen, the output and taste of food will be different as well.
- Fandom. Honduran Cuisine: Overview of Honduran Cuisine History (2011). Retrieved from http://recipes.wikia.com/wiki/Honduran_Cuisine
- Great Honduran food. Retrieved from http://greathonduranfood.com/
- Safari the Globe. Food, Dining and Drinks in Honduras (2013). Retrieved from http://www.safaritheglobe.com/honduras/culture/food-drinks/