LONG BEACH — Those searching for an authentic taste of Mexico can now satisfy their cravings in Long Beach. Taqueria El Jalapeño officially opened Tuesday, March 13, where owner Martha Macias is offering a menu of traditional family recipes from Michoacan, Mexico.
Taste of Mexico
The menu is based upon family recipes honed more than 2,000 miles away, Macias said. There’s carne asada and carnitas, familiar taco toppings for many, but there’s also adobado, chicken seasoned with spices, lime juice and chili sauce and birria, which features beef slowly cooked overnight in chili sauce and a special seasoning. Pastor — sliced pork cooked in seasoned juices — and cow tongue, also known as lengua, are also options.
Those looking for a local flair can find it in the Baja-style fish tacos featuring cod garnished with a creamy sauce and finely chopped cabbage. Tamales, quesadillas, burritos, tortas and morisqueta are also available. On Saturday and Sunday, special weekend dishes such as barbacoa, menudo, pozole and ceviche tostadas are available. Prices range from $2.50 for everyday tacos to $12 for weekend dishes.
From Michoacan to Long Beach
Macias’s life has revolved around food since she was a young girl living in the beautiful but troubled state of Michoacan, where she helped her parents sell tacos and champurrado, a corn-based beverage, from their front door.
Around 30 years ago, Macias moved to the United States and brought along the traditional recipes she learned from her mother in Mexico.
“She taught me how to cook,” said Macias, who now has three daughters and a son of her own. Cousins Lady Medina and Maria Garcia assist with the cooking and Macias plans to keep the family tradition alive.
“I would like to show my daughters and granddaughters the kind of food we made at home in our little town,” she said.