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Surprising Facts About Your 20 Favorite Candy Brands Gallery

Surprising Facts About Your 20 Favorite Candy Brands Gallery

The most popular candies in America have some skeletons in their closets

Wikimedia Commons/ Christopher Michel

Who doesn’t like candy? Whether they're chocolate-covered or candy-coated, packaged sweets are nothing less than an obsession for people all over the world. The top candy brands are well known by just about everyone, but every popular candy has some secrets it’s hiding or skeletons in its closet.

Surprising Facts About Your 20 Favorite Candy Brands

Wikimedia Commons/ Christopher Michel

Who doesn’t like candy? Whether they're chocolate-covered or candy-coated, packaged sweets are nothing less than an obsession for people all over the world. The top candy brands are well known by just about everyone, but every popular candy has some secrets it’s hiding or skeletons in its closet.

Butterfinger

Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

After Butterfinger was identified as containing GMO corn in 1999, German consumers stopped purchasing the product. Instead of reformulating the candy bar, manufacturer Nestlé simply ceased selling Butterfinger in Germany, and you still won’t find it there.

Hershey’s Kisses

Wikimedia Commons/ ivoshandor

Hershey’s Kisses were introduced in 1907, and named after the sound the machine makes when depositing them. More than 80 million Hershey’s Kisses are produced daily.

Kit Kat

Wikimedia Commons/ Scott Erhardt

The culinary term “kit-kat” dates back to the 1700s; it was originally the name given to mutton pies served at London’s Kit-Cat political club. Rowntree’s, the British company that invented the candy, trademarked the term in 1911.

M&Ms

Wikimedia Commons/ Christopher Michel

Red M&Ms were eliminated between the years of 1976 and 1986; orange M&Ms were introduced to replace them. The reason for their removal? Health concerns over Red No. 2, a dye also called amaranth (not to be confused with the plant of the same name), which was a suspected carcinogen. Red M&Ms didn’t even contain any of the dye; they were phased out just to satisfy worried customers. A student at the University of Tennessee named Paul Hethmon started a campaign to bring them back as a joke, but it became a worldwide phenomenon, and the color was brought back.

Mounds and Almond Joy

Wikimedia Commons/ Evan Amos

Peter Paul, the company name on packages of Mounds and Almond Joy, doesn’t actually exist. It merged with Cadbury and was phased out in 1978, and the chocolates are manufactured by Hershey’s in the United States.

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups

Wikimedia Commons/ Evan Amos

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are the best-selling candy brand at American convenience stores by far, selling 62 percent more than the closest competition. And during the Valentine's Day, Easter, Halloween, and Holiday seasons, 47 percent of all candy sold are Reese's Peanut Butter Cups.

Skittles

Wikimedia Commons/ Piccolo Namek

In the U.K. and Sweden, purple Skittles are black currant flavored, not grape as they are in the U.S.!

Snickers

Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images

In December 2000, an Australian man sent a letter to parent company Mars indicating that he had poisoned seven Snickers and Mars bars in the New South Wales area. This led to a massive product recall, in which tens of thousands of the bars were removed from store shelves and thrown out. It’s still unknown whether it was a hoax.

Starburst

ID 106628822 © Jennifer Wallace | Dreamstime.com

Starburst were actually a British invention. They were called Opal Fruits in the U.K. and Ireland until 1998.

Jolly Rancher

Jolly Ranchers were invented by Bill and Dorothy Harmsen, a couple who opened a candy store in Golden, Colorado called The Jolly Rancher in 1949. They sold the company to Beatrice Foods in 1966, and in 1996, the company was bought by Hershey. Today, the candies are produced in Mexico.

3 Musketeers

The filling of the 3 Musketeers bar is called nougat, which is made by whipping egg whites and adding sugar. It’s called 3 Musketeers because from 1932 to 1945, each package contained three different-flavored pieces: chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla. The other two flavors were discontinued due to WWII rationing, so today it’s just chocolate.

Swedish Fish

Swedish Fish were in fact invented in Sweden, as one of a wide variety of shaped “wine gums,” the name given to this type of candy. They first appeared in the 1950s from the candy producer Malaco, and are called “pastellfiskar” or “pastel fish,” in Sweden.

Sour Patch Kids

When Sour Patch Kids were first invented in the 1970s by Frank Galatolie, they were named Sour Group Kids. They were renamed Mars Men, and in 1985, they were finally dubbed Sour Patch Kids to capitalize on the success of Cabbage Patch Kids dolls. It gets its tartness from tartaric acid and citric acid.

Baby Ruth

The Curtiss Candy Company’s Kandy Kake bars were re-christened Baby Ruth in 1921, as slugger Babe Ruth’s star was on the rise. The company claimed that the candy got its name from Grover Cleveland’s daughter, Ruth, but by 1921, Cleveland had been out of the White House for 24 years and Ruth (who passed away at age 12) had been dead for 17. In all likelihood, Curtiss was unable to negotiate an endorsement deal with Babe Ruth so it made up a just-plausible-enough story.

Pop Rocks

Pop Rocks are made by exposing a syrup mixture to high-pressure carbon dioxide gas and allowing it to cool. As the candy dissolves in your mouth, the carbon dioxide is released, creating that fizzy sensation. Contrary to urban legend, combining Pop Rocks with soda will not make your stomach explode.

Twizzlers

Twizzlers are actually one of the oldest confectionaries in the United States; they were first produced all the way back in 1845 by Young & Smylie, which is today a subsidiary of Hershey. The original flavor was (of course) licorice; strawberry didn’t come along until the 1970s.

Twix

Twix was launched in the UK in 1967, and made its first appearance in the United States in 1979; it was called Raider in mainland Europe until 1991. The word “Twix” is actually a mashup of “twin bix,” “bix” being British shorthand for biscuits.

Milky Way

The Milky Way bar was invented in 1923 by Frank Mars, the founder of Mars Candy; he modeled it after a popular milkshake flavor of the day that contained chocolate, caramel, and malted milk powder (The milkshake style was also called Milky Way). The American version includes both nougat and caramel, but the European Milky Way is much smaller and doesn’t contain any caramel.

Tootsie Rolls

The first individually wrapped penny candy in America, Tootsie Rolls were invented in 1907 by an Austrian immigrant named Leo Hirschfeld. Hirschfeld named the candy after his daughter Clara, whose nickname was Tootsie. Sixty-four million Tootsie Rolls are produced daily; they found their way into lollipops in 1931.

Hershey Bar

The Hershey Company’s flagship chocolate bar was first sold in 1900; the process used by inventor Milton Hershey to make the milk chocolate (the United States’ first mass-produced chocolate) is still a trade secret all these years later. Most experts agree, however, that the milk is stabilized by the use of butyric acid, which is actually what gives vomit its distinctive horrible smell. Americans are so used to butyric acid in Hershey’s chocolate, however, that they don’t notice it, and many chocolate manufacturers have taken to adding the acid to their chocolate in order to imitate Hershey’s.


Here's What Candy Came Out The Year You Were Born

Think you know what candy was the most popular the year you were born? Only one way to find out!

These little candies have a very colorful origin story. During the Spanish Civil war, Forest Mars Sr., son of the inventor of the Milky Way, witnessed soldiers eating small chocolate beads covered in hard sugar shells and was inspired. Chocolate sales typically dropped during the summer when temperatures rose and Mars was excited at the idea of inventing a product that wouldn't melt. He and Bruce Murrie, son of Hershey executive William Murrie, joined together to create the original M&M's (Mars + Murrie = M&M).

In 1941, Mars received a patent for his product and began mass-producing the little chocolate in Newark, NJ. They were originally sold in tubes and shelled in brown, red, orange, yellow, green, and violet coatings and only available to soldiers in the war. The candies were first stamped with a black "M" in 1950, which later changed to the white "M" we know and love today in 1954.

DOTS Gumdrops

Boasting itself as "America's favorite, #1-selling gumdrop brand" since its introduction in 1945, these chewy little guys have been beloved for over six decades. Tootsie makes over 4 billion DOTS each year and they still come in the same original flavors today as they did in the 1940s: cherry, strawberry, lemon, lime, and orange.

Bazooka Bubble Gum

Just looking at that picture brings the classic pink bubblegum taste to my mouth and has me humming, "Bazooka-zooka bubblegum. " Developed at the end of World War II in Brooklyn, New York, Bazooka Bubble Gum, with its Bazooka Joe comics inside, has been a classic chewing gum for decades.

While its partner candy bar Mounds has been around for almost a century, Almond Joy didn't join the game until a little later. While Mounds were already becoming a classic among Americans, the demand for milk chocolate was increasing steadily, leading to the development of the Almond Joy candy bar.

Junior Mints

With a creamy mint filling covered in a chocolate shell, Junior Mints were named after a popular Broadway show, Junior Miss, that was on stages in the 1940s. Today, over 15 million Junior Mints are produced each day in Cambridge, MA.


Arachibutyrophobia is a real thing

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Do you hate getting things stuck to the roof of your mouth? You're not alone you might have arachibutyrophobia. Arachibutyrophobia is the fear of getting peanut butter stuck to the roof of your mouth and being choked.

But if you're a peanut butter lover, you'll want to check out these 30 Delicious Things You Can Make With a Jar of Peanut Butter.


2. They are vegan.

Swedish Fish do not contain gelatin, the gelling agent derived from the collagen obtained from various animal body parts found in most gummy candies. So, unlike most gummies, this candy is vegan and 100 percent animal cruelty-free.


Easy Bisquick Dessert Recipes

There are far too many desserts you could make with Bisquick but we've gathered some of the most popular among our readers. If you haven't tried a cobbler made with Bisquick, you need to -- it's the easiest way to make a mouthwatering dessert in minutes! We can't recommend this One Hour Bisquick Peach Cobbler enough.

Other favorite Bisquick desserts of ours include cakes, doughnuts, cinnamon rolls, and cookie bars all baked to perfection.

These toffee bars are so good, you would never guess they are made with a boxed mix. The secret "shortcut" in these Shortcut Toffee Bars is that it's a Bisquick recipe, so the base of the bars is a sweet biscuit crust.

If you're looking for a super simple doughnut recipe, then you've got to give these apple cider doughnut bites a try. They're bursting with flavor, and we think that Bisquick donuts are one of the best ideas out there.

Who knew you could make chocolate chip cookies with biscuit mix? Turns out that you can, and they taste pretty great too. Make these loaded chocolate chip cookies this weekend.

Bisquick cookie recipes like these Cream Cheese Cookie Bars are so sweetly simple! The addition of cream cheese really sets these cookies apart. Bake these creamy bars the next time you're entertaining!


These Are The Most Popular Movie Theater Candies Of All Time

Half the fun of going to the movies is picking out a treat to munch on at the concession stand, and the candy selection is usually way more exciting than typical popcorn. That glowing glass case has held some spectacular movie snacks over the years&mdashsee when your favorites hit theaters.

Do these maybe, sorta taste like plastic? Sure, but even after you've finished a box of these oddly shaped chews, you can spend the remainder of the movie picking the remnants out of your teeth&mdashbonus? Fun fact: Up until 1999 the green, lime pieces were mint-flavored.

The concept of getting tiny sprinkles on top of each piece of candy makes it feel like you're cheating the concessions system&mdashmaybe that's why the chocolate bits have remained popular since the 20s!

The real trick with Milk Duds is finding a way to get them all out of the box in a dark theater. A few of the milk chocolate and chewy caramel bites always manage to stick to the container, but we love the melt-in-your-mouth reward once you finally pry them out.

Chocolate-covered raisins are fairly healthy compared to most movie theater snacks, and they still manage to taste amazing. The box even advertises them as a source of antioxidants but. let's not get carried away, Nestlé.

This candy was marketed as a valuable snack during World War II, and we still can't get enough of it. What better theater treat to share with your movie date than these breakable chocolatey wafers?

These fruit chews comes in classic flavors like lemon, strawberry and orange, but there have been several limited-edition variety boxes over the years including cherry & bubblegum and oranges 'n cream.

The chocolate-covered malted milk balls, created by Leaf Confectionary, were initially introduced 10 years earlier under the name "Giants." The fresh moniker "Whoppers" has stuck through many ownerships changes, ending with the current owner, Hershey.

Creamy mint filling cloaked in chocolate makes for a tasty (and breath freshening!) theater snack. The candy was supposedly named after the creator's favorite Broadway play, "Junior Miss."

These chewy cinnamon candies are not for the faint of tongue&mdashthe sweets pack a punch of heat. The upside is, you might get away with blaming any tears after a sappy scene scene on the spice factor.

We can thank the U.K. for these addictively fruity squares. They were created across the pond in 1960 and made their way to the States 7 years later where they remain a favorite and can be found in various flavors packs.

Using the same formula that produces Red Hots, these sweet and sour candies are made through the process of "cold-panning," in which candy pieces are tossed into revolving pans as color and flavor are added. Flavors including Grape, Cherry and Apple were added to the bunch between the 80s and 90s.

Instead of the measly rolls of Sweet Tarts sold at the grocery store checkout, movie theaters stock big boxes of the crunchy candies. The sugary-tart contrast make these little tablets super addictive, and the box size makes them easier to share. sometimes.

Willy Wonka's magical treat came to life back in the '70s during promotion of the famous film, but unfortunately these sweets eventually disappear. They're sweet and tart with layers that change color and become chewy as you eat them.

When E.T. hit theaters in 1982, Reese's Pieces' cameo in the film boosted the candy's profits by about 65 percent. Thanks, Spielberg, for bringing our attention to one of the greatest movie candies of all time!

People love to taste the rainbow&mdashthese confections are the second most popular of all candies in the U.S., second only to Starburst. They're also a highly munchable treat that you might have a hard time saving until the movie starts.

These fruit-shaped sweets have gone through many flavor changes over the years&mdashwatermelon and blue raspberry were added in the 90s and tropical flavors like pineapple and mango were given a try in 2007.

The first-ever Nerds flavors on the market were Cherry/Orange and Strawberry/Grape, treating candy lovers to two varieties in one box. Every kid remembers pouring crunchy Nerds from the box directly into their mouth, whether a classic flavor or newer, sour edition.

These tart little dudes were originally called Mars Men because they were shaped like martians. A Canadian inventor came up with them back in 1970 but they didn't cross the border into America until later when they became child-shaped.

These delightfully chewy strips of taffy-like candy come in a wide variety of flavors, from classics like cherry, watermelon and blue raspberry to more out-there options like Birthday Cake, Cookie Dough, and "White Mystery."

We love the classic Butterfinger candy bar, but when we saw the fun-to-eat, bite-size version complete with a Simpson's ad campaign, we basically lost it. Unfortunately they were discontinued in 2006, then brought back as Butterfinger Mini Bites in 2009. quit playing with our hearts, Nestlé!

And the trend of shrinking down candy bars to tiny treats continued! Uber-popular Crunch bars got even more buzz-worthy when these crispy clusters were released&mdashoriginally in movie theaters only!&mdashand they became a go-to treat that always disappeared before the trailers were through.

This next-level movie snack blew lots of classic candies out of the water when it hit shelves. Who doesn't want to snack on raw cookie dough (minus the risk of raw eggs), covered in a layer of chocolate while watching a flick? Now that's luxury.

Mike and Ike got a jolt of excitement in the late '90s when they were given a sour outer coating. These chewy candies make us pucker up and slow down to enjoy every bite. Just see if you can make them last until the credits roll.

Who doesn't love Jolly Rancher's long-lasting hard candies? But the treats became even more fun to eat with the release of Jolly Rancher Bites, which come in soft chews, sour fruit-shaped candies, and gummies with fruity filling. Our personal favorite might be the Crunch 'n Chew variety which gives you a hard-candy outside and chewy core.


7. Broccoli contains more protein than steak.

Broccoli got a bad rap a few years ago when President George W Bush proclaimed that he would never eat it again. Sadly, that was probably a bad move because broccoli is actually quite good for you. Aside from the usual nutrition one garners from eating veggies, broccoli in general has a great deal of protein. Calorie for calorie, there is more protein in broccoli than steak. Since it doesn&rsquot come with all those saturated and trans fats or cholesterol, you can get all the protein you need with a significantly lower risk of cardiovascular disease. Let&rsquos not forget all of the other awesome nutrition it provides. Pumpkin seeds are also a good choice as they have more protein than a similar amount of ground beef.


The 25 Most Influential American Candy Bars of All Time

Chocolate has been around for 3,000 years (Mayan temple paintings depict their kings and gods drinking ancient hot cocoa), but it wasn&apost until 1900 when Milton Hershey𠅊ꃊramel manufacturer at the time—hit upon a successful formula for milk chocolate (then a popular treat in Europe, although most Americans had never tried it), pressed it into bars, and sold them for a nickel. Once the Hershey&aposs bar took off, the race was on as smaller candy manufacturers scrambled to outdo each other with increasingly inventive fillings (nougat! pretzels! caramel! marshmallows!).

While lots ofꃊndy bars came and went, the ones with staying power proved to be real game-changers. (Would there be any Justin&aposs Almond Butter Cups without Reese&aposs? Any Clif bars or Kind bars without protein-packed Snickers and Baby Ruth?) Read on for our list of the 25 most influential candy bars in American history (most invented here, others sold here for decades)—you can still buy all of them today!


1950s Candy

You've just crossed over into, the 1950’s. A time when space became the new frontier, TV showed us the world, music gave birth to rock n’ roll and Pez got ahead with its new dispensers. As GI’s returned home and started families, the economy began to grow with innovation. This opened the doors for many new items on the market, especially in toys. Mood Ring anyone?

If you grew up in this time you might remember watching Bonanza while snacking on Chocolate Gold Coins. Or making your mother mad by being late to dinner because you had to wave goodnight to Lassie. Girls wore dresses that matched their mother’s when they went to the grocery store. If you were good you might have been able to get a Charleston Chew or a couple of Cherry Slices.

Teens took over with their new, edgier attitude and sexier clothing, like leather jackets and silhouetted dresses. You tried to be as cool as your older brother, with your own pack of Candy Cigarettes but it was hard to be that cool. Though, one time you did eat an entire Atomic Fireball without tearing up which was pretty impressive.

Do you have a memory about your favorite 1950’s candy? Submit it to us on that candy’s page and you might see it on your next visit.


Our 20 Favorite New Mexican Foods

The confusion is understandable to a point. Yes, we share staples𠅌hiles, posole, tortillas, and beans, for instance𠅋ut our only-in-New-Mexico spin is a centuries-old distillation of Native foraging and cultivation, Spanish colonial imports, and a long period of geographic isolation, before the railways began offloading edibles from elsewhere.

“It’s really important to understand that New Mexican food, as similar as it is to Mexican in some respects, grew up independently,” says Bill Jamison, co-author with our culinary editor Cheryl Alters Jamison of Tasting New Mexico: Recipes Celebrating 100 Years of Distinctive Home Cooking (Museum of New Mexico Press). “There was little influence back and forth between what is now New Mexico and Mexico in the 17th and 18th centuries.ਊ wagon train would come up every two or three years and bring nice things for the rich folks in the area, but not for the general population. Chile became a dominant feature in this period of isolation.”

That’s why when you walk into a classic New Mexican restaurant, or are lucky enough to sit down at a traditional New Mexican home-cooked dinner, you won’t be served a Oaxacan tamale filled with chicken mole and wrapped in a banana leaf. You also won’t be eating crispy-shelled tacos filled with refried beans and topped with shredded Velveeta and sour cream, followed by fried ice cream. You’ll tuck into some of this: stacked red chile enchiladas, green chile stew, chiles rellenos, pinto beans, chicos, carne adovada, a basket of sopaipillas or horno bread, and natillas (custard topped with cinnamon) or biscochitos for dessert.

Chile, of course, is the most essential𠅎ven sacred—ingredient in New Mexican cuisine. Like France does for its wine grapes and cheeses, “We pass legislation protecting our chiles. You can’t grow a New Mexico chile in Texas,” says Santa Fe�sed Kiowa chef Lois Ellen Frank, author of the James Beard Award–winning Foods of the Southwest Indian Nations (Ten Speed Press).

Along with their vibrant color and flavor, chiles have always brought a lot to the table. 𠇊ncestral indigenous people knew two things,” Frank adds. 𠇌hiles have flavor, and they have medicine.” Along with vitamin C, they contain capsicum oil, which is now found in over-the-counter pain-relieving ointments. “The spiciness releases feel-good endorphins in the brain,” she says. 𠇌hiles were also used to kill bacteria during the curing of meat to make jerky.”

In a state so beautiful that it daily makes visitors lose their minds, abandon their regularly scheduled life, and relocate here, an accurate understanding of New Mexican food is the litmus test that separates the newbies from folks whose roots go back centuries. Tip: Never spell it 𠇌hili” unless you𠆝 like someone to tell you to go back to Texas.

Top 20 New Mexican Foods

1. Green Chile

If this state didn’t have such a strong Catholic identity, we𠆝 probably all bow down to statues of green chile and regularly attend green chile houses of worship. Wait—many of our restaurants probably fit that description.

Apart from dried green chile, year-round green chile is actually a relatively recent development before refrigeration, the young form of the New Mexican chiles could be enjoyed only until they matured into red ones. Hatch is the best-known source, and it’s a region and a brand, not a specific type. Arguably the best-known variety is Big Jim, named after the late Hatch chile breeder Jim Lytle.

Found in green chile stew. Move over, chicken noodle soup. This stuff is New Mexico’s penicillin𠅊nd ultimate comfort food. Chopped chile, pork, onions, garlic, and potatoes are the usual building blocks. also : green chile chicken enchiladas, green chile cheeseburgers (see below), breakfast (and regular) burritos, candy, and even beer𠅊lmost anything, when you get right down to it.

2. Green Chile Cheeseburgers

The bun is crusty, or cheek-soft, or brioche-flaky. The meat is rich, the patty pancake-flat or ovoid. We add a layer of cheese (usually Jack or Cheddar), maybe some bacon, and the elevating showstopper, green chile𠅍iced, sliced, or whole wilted. It’s our default lunch or dinner choice, our tower of power, our point of pride, our fat stack, our singular source of go-to satisfaction, our comforting panza plumper.

What makes it ours ?  It was invented here, and the green chile seals the deal. Our state has a Green Chile Cheeseburger Trail with almost a hundred options (although there are many more).

3.  Chiles Rellenos 

Take a New Mexico green chile, stuff it with Jack cheese, dip it in thick cornmeal batter, and fry it. Served with chile and more cheese, they’re best eaten before a strenuous hike, although a nap might be more appealing.

W hat makes it ours ?  New Mexico chiles are used Mexican rellenos’ batter is thinner and eggier.

4. Red Chile

If green chile is like a zippy, fun sauvignon blanc, then red chile is like petite sirah: earthy, extracted. Not only does it eat off a woman’s lipstick, it replaces it with its own rusty stain. The mature form of green, its smoky ballast is the yang to green chile’s yin. Some swear it’s a great hangover cure. You’ll find red chile dried in the form of pods, flakes, or powder, and it’s incorporated into sauces, not served whole. Lots of people order 𠇌hristmas,” both red and green, to get the best of both worlds. Chimayó red is a top pick.

Found in  carne adovada, stacked red chile enchiladas (see recipe), as a sauce over huevos rancheros, and in chocolate. 

5.  Carne Adovada 

Pork slow-braised in a spicy red chile bath for hours, then served on its own, folded into burritos, dolloped on savory breakfast dishes, or in omelets. 

What makes it ours ?  The red chile.

6.  Stacked Red Chile਎nchiladas with a Fried Egg

This was the most-cited ultimate New Mexican meal in a recent Facebook post, which corroborated Bill Jamison’s recommendation. (See recipe below.)

W hat makes it ours ?  “Mexican enchiladas aren’t as heavily sauced,” Cheryl Alters Jamison says, and of course, the key ingredient is our red chile.

7.  Huevos Rancheros 

Two eggs over easy, atop tortillas, smothered with chile and surrounded by whole beans and smattered with cheese—this breakfast handles the hunger of cowboys and desk jockeys alike.

W hat makes it ours ? Blue corn tortillas under the eggs, red and/or green chile ladled on.

8. Blue Corn

A Native staple, usually ground, it provides 20 percent more protein, has a lower glycemic index, and is sweeter than yellow or white corn. Corn is sacred here in Pueblo jewelry, stones are carved into representations of corn and the Corn Maiden, who symbolizes life. Pick up some locally grown blue corn at Taos Pueblo’s Red Willow Farmers’ Market.

F ound in  blue corn tortillas and chips, blue corn breakfast porridge (chaquehue), blue corn pancakes, and atole, a hot beverage.

9.  Tamales 

Wrapped like presents in corn husks, tamales are a Christmas must, but the steamed blue or yellow cornmeal-and-lard pouches also make a great year-round lunch or dinner.

What makes it ours ?  The use of blue cornmeal and/or red and green chiles in the pork filling.

10.  Tortillas 

Yes, tortillas are found everywhere, but 𠇋lue corn tortillas really evolved as a northern New Mexico thing,” says Cheryl Alters Jamison. Nestled in baskets and tortilla warmers, these soft hand-made disks serve the roles of bread, wrapper, even scoop. Santa Fe devotees pick up still-warm, fluffy corn ones at Alicia’s Tortilleria,� Rufina Circle, Santa Fe (505) 438-9545.

Found in  burritos, enchiladas, huevos rancheros, and fried as chips.

11.  Chicharrones 

Small pieces of pork (composed of meat, fat, and skin) are slowly simmered and fried in their own fat. Often served in burritos, or as a snack, they are a comfort food to those in the NM know. 

What makes it ours ?  In Mexico, chicharrones are synonymous with the airy pork rinds, and are commonly packaged as potato-chip-like salty snacks.

12.  Chicos 

These smoky, chewy corn kernels are traditionally first horno-roasted on the cob overnight, then dried on rooftops. Buy them at Los Chileros, or from Jesus Guzman at the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market.

Found in  i ts namesake dish, a cooked-down mixture of pork, chile, onion, and oregano. The traditional family recipe of Margaret Naranjo, from Santa Clara Pueblo, includes bison and green chile, and she graciously shared her bison chico stew recipe with us.

13. Posole

Traditionally served during pueblo feast days and at winter holiday celebrations all over the state, this hominy-like stew, packed with its namesake ingredient of nixtamalized corn, comes with most classic New Mexican combination plates. 

What makes it ours ?  “Posole in Mexico [spelled pozole there] is more of a main dish, usually covered with cabbage, and a lot of condiments,” Bill explains. You don’t find it in Tex-Mex in New Mexico it’s almost a required side dish (instead of rice as in Mexico or Texas).

14. Beans

These whole (not refried) beans, primarily pinto but also bolita and Anasazi, are most New Mexican when they leisurely simmer in a micaceous pot made of local clay (available at Pasquals). A regular pot works fine, too, but a pressure cooker gets the frijoles ready in a reasonable after-work time frame.

Found in burritos, with chile and chicos, and as a side.

15. Calabacitas

Sliced or cubed zucchini and yellow squash—saut with garlic and onions and then combined with corn and green chile, although variations are legion—is a popular summer vegetable side dish.

What makes it ours ?  Ours has green chile Mexico’s has tomatoes. Squash, along with corn and beans, was grown and eaten by Native people here prior to contact with the Spanish.

16. Horno Bread

On pueblos throughout New Mexico, you’ll notice beehive-shaped earthen ovens out in people’s yards. Hornos were brought to this land by the Spanish, and adopted by the indigenous people, but long before that, Moorish people brought this style of oven to the Spanish. Horno bread, with a thick crust and pillowy interior, is often made in big batches. One variation contains green chile and cheese. At the Gallup Farmers’ Market, you can buy sourdough horno bread, a nontraditional iteration by Zuni baker Jimmy Paywa.

17. Navajo Fry Bread

The Diné people made fry bread out of the bags of rancid, bug-infested flour given to them by the U.S. Army after the Long Walk divorced them from their homeland and their traditional sources of nourishment. Fondly claimed by contemporary Puebloan and Diné people today, fry bread has transcended its bitter beginnings.

Found in  Navajo tacos (as the shell), Navajo fry bread burgers (the bun), or sprinkled with powdered sugar on its own.

18. Sopaipillas

Yes, they’re fried pockets of dough, but no, they’re not greasy a thin, crispy outside gives way to a soft, stretchy inner layer.

Found in  the north, as a main course stuffed with meat and smothered with chile and cheese, as a dinner side served with honey, or as a dessert in the southern part of the state.

19. Piñon

This beloved nut from piñon trees is much like the Italian pignoli or pine nut. Locals aver that a good crop comes along only once every seven years. You can pick them up from trucks parked on the side of the road—you’ll recognize them by the rudimentary hand-painted  PIÑON  sign on the side—or order them at the New Mexican Pi ñ on Nut Company

Found in  blue corn piñon pancakes, sweet-meat empanaditas, piñon brittle, and Taos Cow’s piñon caramel vanilla ice cream.

20.  Biscochitos 

If you tried to sell people on cookies containing lard and aniseed in any other state, it𠆝 be rough going. But here, this cinnamon-dusted, scallop-edged shortbread elicits rapturous sighs and reminiscences of the ways beloved abuelas, madres, and tias made them oh so perfectly. That is, after the cookies are all gone.

Found in  Christmas potluck table offerings, but eaten all year round.

12 Of Our Readers Favorite Restaurants (and What to Order!)

ANGELINA’S RESTAURANT
1226 N. Railroad Ave, Española (505) 753- 8543. Order the posole. (Note: This business has closed since the story was originally published.)

ATRISCO CAFE & BAR
193 Paseo De Peralta, Santa Fe (505) 983-7401. Order the green chile cheese enchiladas.

BODE’S GENERAL STORE
21196 U.S. Hwy. 84, Abiquiú (505) 685-4422. Order the green chile cheeseburger.

CHOPE’S BAR & CAFE
16145 N.M. 28, La Mesa (575) 233-3420. Order the chiles rellenos.

EARL’S RESTAURANT
1400 E. Historic Hwy. 66, Gallup (505) 863-4201. Order the Navajo burger.

FOXY DRIVE-IN
720 W. 7th St., Clovis (575) 763-7995. Order the taquitas (aka flautas).

MARY & TITO’S CAFE
2711 4th St., Albuquerque (505) 344-6266. Order the turnover (aka sopaipilla) stuffed with carne adovada, served with green chile.

EL PARASOL
603 Santa Cruz Rd., Española (505) 753-8852. Order the tamales.

LA POSTA DE MESILLA
2410 Calle de San Albino, Las Cruces (575) 524-3524. Order the tostadas compuestas.

THE SHED
113 E. Palace Ave., Santa Fe (505) 982-9030. Order the stacked red chile enchiladas, topped with an egg.

Stacked Red Chile Enchiladas

Makes 1 serving (multiply by the number of servings you need)

The ultimate New Mexico enchilada, this molten melding of chile, cheese, and corn tortillas can never be dismissed as ordinary food𠅊nd it’s even more of a classic topped with an over-easy or sunny-side-up egg. If you are serving multiple people, you can make four or more stacked enchiladas on a baking sheet if you wish, then carefully transfer the stacks, after broiling, from the baking sheet to serving dishes.

Vegetable oil for pan frying
3 blue corn tortillas
3𠑄 cup red chile sauce, warmed
2 teaspoons minced onion
4 ounces mild Cheddar, Colby, or Monterey Jack cheese, or a combination, grated
1 tablespoon butter
1 large egg
Salt and pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

Heat the broiler. (If the broiler has multiple heat settings, use the lowest.)

Heat 1𠑂 to 1 inch of oil in a small skillet until the oil ripples. With tongs, dunk each tortilla in oil long enough for it to go limp, a matter of seconds. Don’t let the tortilla turn crisp. Drain on paper towels and repeat with the remaining tortillas.

On a heatproof plate, layer the first tortilla with half of the onion and one-third of the chile sauce and cheese. Repeat for the second layer. Top with the third tortilla, then add the remaining chile sauce and sprinkle the remaining cheese over all.

Broil the enchilada until the cheese melts.

Meanwhile, warm the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Crack the egg into the skillet, season with salt and pepper, and cook either sunny side up or over easy.