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Where Did the Taco Come From?


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Where Did the Taco Come From?


Dating back to the 18th century, the dish has jumped from the Mexican silver mines to fast food staple

By Katy June Friesen

Smithsonian.com, May 04, 2012,

Jeffrey M. Pilcher, professor of history at the University of Minnesota, has traveled around the world eating tacos. For the past 20 years, he has investigated the history, politics and evolution of Mexican food, including how Mexican silver miners likely invented the taco, how Mexican Americans in the Southwest reinvented it, and how businessman Glen Bell mass-marketed it to Anglo palates via the crunchy Taco Bell shell. Pilcher is author and editor, respectively, of the forthcoming Planet Taco: A Global History of Mexican Food (Oxford University Press) and The Oxford Handbook of Food History. His previous books include The Sausage Rebellion: Public Health, Private Enterprise, and Meat in Mexico City, 1890-1917 and Que vivan los tamales! Food and the Making of Mexican Identity.

To where have you traced the birth of the taco? And what about the origin of the word itself?

The origins of the taco are really unknown. My theory is that it dates from the 18th century and the silver mines in Mexico, because in those mines the word “taco” referred to the little charges they would use to excavate the ore. These were pieces of paper that they would wrap around gunpowder and insert into the holes they carved in the rock face. When you think about it, a chicken taquito with a good hot sauce is really a lot like a stick of dynamite. The first references [to the taco] in any sort of archive or dictionary come from the end of the 19th century. And one of the first types of tacos described is called tacos de minero—miner’s tacos. So the taco is not necessarily this age-old cultural expression; it’s not a food that goes back to time immemorial. Scissors-32x32.png

Read More http://www.smithsoni...-Come-From.html

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  • 1 month later...

Draggintree, thanks. As a lover of all foods Tex Mex the taco is one of our favorites. I never knew or thought about the origin of the name before. Thanks. Makes sense.

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I was hacked.


I was spanked by Yahoo for dispensing inappropriate correspondance WITH AUTHENTICATION; crap I had no idea was going on; I'd been receiving notification from people I've never heard of to cease and desist; I've been getting Yahoo chat notices from people I've never ever known (nor have ever engaged in chat).


I've changed my password here (as well as all other places except the FR because I'm banned there), and I've taken additional steps to resolve the matter.


It would appear that I picked up a rootkit. It appears my machine was a zombie (or whatever) for some time.


I do NOT understand, but ALL of my eMail that was gone at Yahoo is now back (as are ALL of my Flickr photos)!


ALL of that was GONE!


It took me all week to get restored a system image (not restore-point) from Mar 2012 - tech details deleted on account of total boring detail tech stuff - and it looks like things might be somewhat smiley (at this time). So far even the fancy-Dan posting features of this board appear to be functioning.


I'm happy that I can post w/out the machine crashing every other second. This is nice.


Update a/o most recent edit: still not crashing / wroks good, last long time! Happy camper this I am!

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  • 4 years later...

COMMENTARY: Holiday history of tamale making in Texas


· Updated 17 hrs ago

· The Christmas season holds different memories and meaning for people around the globe. Of course, the celebration of faith and family spans most cultures. But here in Texas, we know another feeling to be associated with Christmas: a hunger for tamales. Countless Texas families spend Christmas gathered around corn husk-wrapped tamales the way their parents and grandparents did before them, but have you ever wondered where this tasty tradition started?


· The connection between Christmas and tamales runs deep in American history. Tamales, or the ancestors of what we’d call a tamale today, were a staple for Native Americans dating as far back as 8,000 B.C. Common among many Mesoamerican faiths was the idea that God had crafted humans from corn, and since corn was quite literally the substance of life, consuming it became a way to reconnect with the spirit. Tamales, made from corn, were commonly sent out with hunters, travelers, and soldiers for portable sustenance and luck along their journeys, and became the chosen feast for spiritual and community celebrations. Even the word ‘tamale’ is thought to come from the Aztecs’ word for wrap: ‘tamalli.’ More recently, the tamale tie to Christmas has solidified. Scissors-32x32.png


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  • 6 months later...

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