The first time I went to Mexico it was a bit of a shock. It was hot, sunny and for the most part dirty. I'd been all over Europe but most of Europe is like our own country without the dillution of culture. Mexico was different, it felt foreign. As much as I thought I'd had Mexican food at home I learned soon enough that I didn't know the first thing about Mexican food. We paid a taxi for a whole day to just drive us around Cozomel island, show us ruins and then drop us off at a restaurant of his choice for dinner. He let us out at a largely open air restaurant that only had Mexicans in it (rare in Cozomel). One of the things they brought us was tortilla soup and boy was I surprised. It had flavor, depth and the tortillas were crisp. I've not had decent tortilla soup since then. It usually tastes like taco seasoning with soggy unleaven bread in it. Natalya decided to fix Tortilla soup last night and it was quite good. I think with some more seasoning and perfecting the technique of keeping the tortillas crisp she'd be on to something.
And another surprise was the empanadas. We fell in love with the Chilean Empanada at Julia's Empanadas in the Adams Morgan district of Washington D.C. and have been chasing the dream ever since.
I miss Mexico.