A Molcajete and Homemade Salsa - Speech Example

Published: 2023-02-28
A Molcajete and Homemade Salsa - Speech Example
Type of paper:  Speech
Categories:  Cuisine
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 686 words
6 min read


The world is comprised of people who have various cultures. Learning about the cultural practices of other people helps learners to appreciate diversity. Cultural diversity can be witnessed in food preparation methods. Different tools are used in the preparation of ingredients in the Mexican culture, and molcajetes are one of the grinding devices utilized. A molcajete is a tool, particularly used in the grinding of salsa ingredients (Kenyon & Alpers, 2010). The secret of making the best salsa is the use of molcajete in grinding the ingredients. A molcajete is a Mexican version of the modern day pestle and mortar (Kenyon & Alpers, 2010). Mainly, it is a bowl made of volcanic stone.

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History and Backgrounds of Molcajete A molcajete is a grinding tool that was invented in Mexico during the end of the last ice age. About 10000 years ago, the world experienced significant changes in climate that led to pronounced seasons in Mexico (Simmons, 2008). Most game animals declined in population. The changing landscapes led to a dietary shift among the Mexicans hence resulting in increased reliance on seeds from pods, grasses, and fruits. The new diet required the development of new tools that would aid in the processing of these foods. With this in mind, the local people learned how to make stone pounding and grinding tools that would supplement the flint knives and scrapers (Simmons, 2008). A molcajete was one of the tools developed during this time.

Traditionally, a molcajete is a sauce bowl with three sturdy legs that provide maximum support to facilitate the grinding of the ingredients to make salsas. In Aztec times, the molcajetes were valuable items evident from the descriptions of the Aztec banquets (Simmons, 2008). Holding a molcajete to a feast was considered prestigious. Importantly, the tool was supposed to be held in a particular way when taking it to a banquet. It was a requirement to carry the bowl using the right hand. Also, it was supposed to rests on the palm of the person carrying it. From this, it is clear that a molcajete was an essential tool in the Mexican culture.

Modern Uses of Molcajetes In the contemporary world, molcajetes are used for crushing and grinding the spices when preparing salsas. The bowls have a rough surface of basalt stones that create a crushing surface, as seen in the picture below (Jordan, 2018).

Most new molcajetes made of basalt are often broken to remove the small basalt grains on the surface. The commonly used technique for using a new molcajete in the modern world involves the grinding of uncooked white rice in the tool. When the rice is fully ground and has no visible grains of basalt, the molcajete is now ready for use. A molcajete in the modern world is used to grind different ingredients into salsas. In addition to that, it is known to season and carry over flavors from one preparation to another. Salsas made in the sauce bowls have a different texture, and some carry a significant difference in their flavors (Simmons, 2008). Other modern uses of a molcajete are a cooking tool where it is heated to elevated temperatures and used to heat food.


In conclusion, molcajetes are grinding tools used by Mexicans to grind ingredients into salsa. Traditionally, a molcajete in the Mexican tradition was used to grind ingredients but was also considered prestigious. The Mexican culture had rules that required individuals to hold the bowls in a particular way using the right hand. Also, a molcajete was not held by the rims, but rather rested on the hands of a person carrying it to a banquet. In the modern world, the tools are used for grinding ingredients into salsas. People often claim that homemade salsas using the bowls tend to have a unique and tastier flavor when compared to salsas made using other tools.


Jordan, E. (2018). Art and culture: Exploring Mexican artifacts. Huntington Beach, CA : Teacher Created Materials

Kenyon, C., & Alpers, J. (2010). Knack Mexican cooking: A step-by-step guide to authentic dishes made easy. Guilford, Conn: Knack.

Simmons, M. (2008). Things cooks love: [implements, ingredients, and recipes]. Kansas City: Andrews McMeel Pub

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A Molcajete and Homemade Salsa - Speech Example. (2023, Feb 28). Retrieved from https://speedypaper.com/essays/a-molcajete-and-homemade-salsa-speech-example

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