The-Soul-of-Mexico-Cooking-ClassCFU Mexican cooking class  teacher, Laura Sonderup, shares this wonderful article about Mexican cuisine:
The cuisine of Mexico is a richly varied style of food with clear influences from not only the country’s indigenous populations, but also of Europe and the Middle East.
Comida prehispánica included corn, chiles, native herbs, beans, tomatoes, vanilla, avocado, squash, sweet potato, jicama, guava and papaya; however, the Spanish conquistadores were responsible for introducing rice, beef, chicken, garlic, and onions. And if you’re looking for exotic -— you can still enjoy ancient Mayan and Aztec culinary influences in many one-of-a-kind dishes featuring grasshoppers, deer, iguana, rattlesnake, and monkey!
During a trip last month to Oaxaca, I had an opportunity to sample a wide variety of comida típica — food that is typical of the state of Oaxaca and typically delicious!Any commentary on the foods of Oaxaca must begin with the infamous chapulines, the grasshoppers that are so well known in this region. And although anyone who has ridden a bicycle will tell you that they have ingested at least one grasshopper (along with the odd fly, moth and mosquito), this was purposeful consumption — and that’s decidedly different!
You can sample the grasshoppers at restaurants throughout Oaxaca or by purchasing them in bulk at any of the vendors at the mercado. The grasshoppers are prepared with chile, garlic and other seasonings, which combine for a spicy, crunchy, strange taste that wasn’t bad at all. 
Particularly when accompanied by a cold Montejo beer or mezcal shot!
Following a close second in notoriety is the fascinating blend of chocolate, chiles, garlic, onions and nuts that is the undisputed national sauce of Mexico — mole. Mole comes from the Aztec word molli, meaning concoction or stew and is believed to have been created in the late 1600’s by a nun in a convent in Puebla de los Angeles, outside Mexico City. Today, Oaxaca has the reputation of being the best state for mole, in Mexico. The famous “seven moles of Oaxaca” encompass a rainbow of colors such as black, brown, red, yellow and green. The region’s most famous variety, mole negro, uses six kinds of chile, almonds, raisins, pumpkin seeds, tomato, garlic, onions, plantains, chocolate, spices, chile seeds, lard and requires the efforts of a culinary athlete to bring it to perfect completion.
Interested in learning more about Mexican cuisine? Enroll today in The Soul of Mexico: Bold Flavors, Rich Traditions!