The Student News Site of Cathedral High School | Indianapolis, Indiana

Irish Connection

The Student News Site of Cathedral High School | Indianapolis, Indiana

Irish Connection

The Student News Site of Cathedral High School | Indianapolis, Indiana

Irish Connection

Face Off Friday: Mexicano or Italiano

Roch Egan – Me gusta Mexicano

An amalgamation of spicy chiles, hominy, pork bones, and an array of spices that could knock your socks off, simmer in a pot with bone broth all day. Only to be served covered with your choice of radishes, chicharrones, onion, lime, chips… and whatever else your heart desires. This authentic Mexican soup is called Pozole and it is the perfect example of all that Mexican food is, all day cooking endeavors with the family, and passing down recipes for generations to come.

Before we get too deep into the discussion of Mexican cuisine, I want to make it clear that I am not arguing for chain Tex Mex restaurants. It’s important to be able to spot these imposters when you have a hankering for Mexican. Here are some things to look for; The name, if the establishment is called “La/El” and then some simple word such as “Cantina” or “Jalepeño” this place is most likely not legit. The menu, if the menu includes items such as “Burritos Mexicanos” then please avoid, a real Mexican restaurant would just call them burritos, in addition if said restaurant serves margaritas in a gallon size… I digress. If the discussion is Italian vs. La Cantina Mexican eats… then of course Italian, but that’s not what it is.

Italian just does not have the variety that Mexican has. From someone who works at a pizza and pasta restaurant, I can tell you that there are two main bases in Italian cuisine, tomatoes and cheese. It’s all a rendition of an Alfredo or a Tomato sauce, take a delicious carbonara for example, tempered eggs with… that’s right, loads of cheese. Cacio e Pepe is basically an Alfredo sauce without the cream. Also I challenge you to make either of those dishes, I for one have tried and they are both incredibly difficult dishes to master, and often leads to a waste of a pound of cheese. And of course we have our favorite, bolognese, just an extra fancy tomato sauce. An argument could be made for some sort of spicy diavolo sauce, but that is simply a combination of cream and tomato sauce.

Mexican cuisine has food for every event, time of day, and feeling. For breakfast some wonderful huevos rancheros, which includes delicious fried eggs on top of beans, salsa, and fried potatoes. Or use some leftover tortilla chips and make chilaquiles, toasted tortilla chips topped with chorizo, eggs, and queso fresco. 

Lunch is an array of options from fresh made street tacos you can get fresh off the griddle to overfilled tortas that require a fork and knife. Only to indulge in pozole that has been simmering all day, or better yet a Tamalada where families come together all day and make Tamales. 

The community that Mexican culture has brought into their cuisine is unmatched, Spanish teacher Sra. Jamell said “Each abuelita has her own recipe for all these dishes and that brings each individual family together, and builds little communities” if you aren’t full yet there is still a complex assortment of Mexican desserts. Some fan favorites are Tres Leche, a decadent cream filled cake covered in caramelized sugar, churros, which can be dipped or covered to your liking, Mexican wedding cookies, conchas, and even flan, which was originally from Rome, but today’s recipes are most heavily included by Mexico.

Throughout this article I have done my best to not mix Hispanic cultures, of course Mexican cuisine in and of itself is much different than Puerto Rican, Guatemalan, Spanish and others, but it wouldn’t be fair not to mention how these cuisines have all come together in the modern day to create the most delicious plates I’ve ever eaten. So I’ll ask you, what made your mouth water more? The simmering pozole with a juicy fork falling off the bone, or was it the tres leche cake that your spoon just glides through?

Either way, no matter which food you prefer, never stop exploring. Food, like many other things, has the power to unite, which is something needed in today’s culture. Go explore new cultures, take insight into their ways of life and history, and most importantly chow down on some delicious ethnic food.

Daniel Kent – Mi piace l’italiano

This poll has ended.

Face Off Friday


Sorry, there was an error loading this poll.

Cacio e Pepe. Carbonara. Risotto. Gelato. PIZZA. Those are just five dishes that fall under the genre of Italian food, and I could eat those five for the rest of my life and be happy forever. From Sicily to Genoa, the Italian peninsula is home to a wide variety of mouthwatering foods that have thankfully made their way into American diets. There’s a reason that Italy has been named the food capital of the world by a plethora of magazines and other publications. Because of the variety of dishes and superior flavors, Italian food, without a doubt, is better than Mexican food.

Pizza and pasta are foods that are essential to American diets. At almost every neighborhood restaurant, pasta bakes, meatballs, or some form of pizza are on the menu. While the execution of these dishes may be seen as slightly preposterous by Italians, these dishes are still inherently Italian because of their origins. These Italian staples are present on so many menus because of their universal appeal to customers. This appeal is, of course, based within the rich Italian flavors. While eating a classic bolognese, people can taste the exquisite Parmesan, a hint of flavorful wine, and, above all, the depth of simmered tomatoes. This is just one of the thousands of Italian dishes which exemplify the epitome of decadent cuisine.  

Self proclaimed chef senior Maya Marshalleck, who brings lunches to school that smell of Michelin quality, put it best, saying, “The simplicity and complexity of the food added with a love of cooking makes Italian food so delicious. My favorites are spaghetti bolognese and carbonara due to the rich and robust flavors.” 

Unfortunately, when looking at local Mexican restaurants or cooking a Mexican dish at home, the flavor profiles often fall flat and the variety of ingredients is minimal. Don’t get me wrong, I love an authentic Mexican burrito from Paco’s Taqueria. However, the flavors within these dishes are not as vibrant as those in Italian foods. Marshalleck said, “As a Latina American, I really only like the Mexican food my family makes. Some restaurants here are a little lackluster. The majority of the food my family makes is Mexican/Hispanic food, but I look forward more to those Italian flavors.” 

While Mexican food is indeed delicious and filling, I believe that Italian food is still superior because of its rich flavors and variety. At the end of the day, the decision between which is better is up to you to decide. So, did my faceoff make you hungrier, or did Roch’s? If the answer is the former then it’s clear which is truly better.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributors
Roch Egan, Reporter
Daniel Kent, Managing Editor
Daniel Kent is a senior and Managing Editor for the Irish Connection Media Network and the Megaphone and has been on staff since his sophomore year. He lives in Indianapolis with his parents, and his three siblings are graduates of Cathedral High School. He is a Captain of the Speech and Debate Team, Co-President of the Hiking Club and member of many other clubs. He enjoys baking in his free time and going to the movies with friends.

Comments (0)

All THE MEGAPHONE Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *