Mexican spice an 'old-school' way of life - 11 Jul 2007
Spicy cuisine is a highlight of holidays in Mexico - and has been for a long time, new research reveals.
US archaeologists have discovered that as long as 1,500 years ago Mexicans grew and stored at least 10 different kinds of chilli peppers.
"You don't grow 7 different kinds of chillies unless you're cooking some pretty interesting food," said Linda Perry of the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History.
Desiccated plant remains from excavations in two dry rock shelters, Guila Naquitz and Silvia's Cave in the south of Mexico, yielded the results, which were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The stimulating qualities of Mexican food mirror the destination's atmosphere, which welcomes visitors while maintaining its own unique cultural character.
Tourists on holiday in Mexico can snorkel and windsurf at stunning resort Cancun, before sampling the shopping and bars of Playa del Carmen.
And - as pre-Colombian inhabitants of the country knew - a day on holiday in Mexico would not be complete without a taste of the local cuisine.
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