Chilaquiles are a traditional Mexican dish dating back centuries to the early Aztecs. The word chilaquiles (pronounced: [tʃilaˈkiles] or chee-lah-kee-lehs) derives from an ancient word in the Aztec Nahuatl language meaning “chilis and greens.” The Nahuatl language originated in Central Mexico and can still be heard spoken today in some regional communities. The tradition of preparing chilaquiles has existed for hundreds of years. As such, they are a ubiquitous meal for many Mexican families. Chilaquiles are said to have been first brought to America in a cookbook by Encarnación Pinedo, “The Spanish Cook” in 1898.
The basic makings of traditional chilaquiles are crunchy fried corn tortilla pieces, with a Chile salsa over them; simmered until the tortilla starts softening to absorb the sauce’s flavor. Though the basic ingredients are minimal, chilaquiles often use leftover tortillas and salsas, as a way of extending dishes with more expensive meats and other ingredients. Today, beef, chicken, eggs, queso fresco, and other ingredients are staples in many recipes. Additional ingredients, salsas, or flavors are often unique to a particular region or family recipe.
Today, foodies, millennials, and hipsters are looking for authentic traditions with a modern twist. This is the reason why Chillinabox has accomplished bringing this Mexican tradition to Denver with a unique modern approach: We serve the chilaquiles with at least 4 different types of salsas (sauces) freshly made in a food van called: chillinabox.