Although several New Mexican dishes are quite similar to Mexican and Tex-Mex offerings such as enchiladas and burritos, New Mexican food is actually very different. The most important difference is the particular variety of chili pepper used. New Mexican chili comes in several different varieties and is usually referred to as "green chili" or "red chili" depending on the stage of ripeness in which it was picked. The green chili is chopped and thickened with a bit of flour to make a sauce, and the red chili pods are ground and simmered with water to make the fiery red chili sauce.
However, green chili, which is picked before it has had time to fully ripen, is the refining ingredient of New Mexican food because of its flavor. In the past few years, green chili has grown increasingly more common outside of New Mexico and remains an important ingredient in everything from enchiladas and burritos to cheeseburgers and bagels within the state's borders.
Some typical New Mexican cuisines include Albondigas, which are meatballs, Atole – a thick, hot gruel made from corn, Biscochitos – anise-flavored cookies, Burritos – a white flour tortilla, filled with meats, beans, cheese, or a combination of these , and rolled. They are typically served smothered with chili sauce and melted cheese.
But there are innumerable other delicacies in the New Mexican cuisine such as Capirotada – a raisin and walnut pudding, Carne Adovada – cubes of pork that have been marinated and cooked in red chili, garlic and oregano, Chalupas or "little boats" – corn tortillas fried into a bowl shape and filled with shredded chicken, and / or beans, and toped with guacamole and salsa, Chicharron – pork skin, fried crisp, Chili con queso – chili and melted cheese mixed together into a dip, Chiles Relenos – roasted, peeled and stuffed (often with cheese) chiles, usually dipped in a batter and fried.
Then you have Chimichanga – a burrito that's deep fried, and smothered with chili and cheese, Chorizo - a spicy pork sausage, seasoned with garlic and red chili, Cilantro – a pungent green herb used in salsas, Empanada – a turnover, filled usually with a sweetened meat mixture or fruit, Enchiladas – corn tortillas filled with meat, beans or cheese, and either roled, or stacked, and covered with chile sauce and cheese, Fajitas – strips of grilled steak or chicken that come with tortillas, sauteed peppers and angles, and other side dishes to make do-it-yourself burritos.
Some other loved preparations include Flan – caramel custard dessert, Flautas – tightly roled, fried to a crunch, enchiladas, Frijoles (beans), Guacamole – mashed avacado, usually with chopped onion, tomatoes, garlic, lime and chile, Huevos Rancheros – corn tortillas, topped with eggs, usually fried, smothered with chile and cheese, Jalapenos – small, fat chiles, very hot, frequently used in salsa.
Then there is Menudo – a soup made with tripe and chiles (known as "breakfast of champions"), Nachos – tostadas topped with beans, melted cheese, sliced jalapenos, sometimes served "Grande" with ground beef, or shredded chicken, guacamole and sour cream, Natilla – soft custard dessert, Pico de Gallo – salsa with chopped fresh chiles, tomatoes, onions and cilantro, Posole – a thick stew made with hominy corn simmered for hours with red chile and pork.
Finally, you have some really exotic stuff like Quesadilla – a turnover made of a flour tortilla, filled with cheese or other ingredients, then toasted, fried or baked, Refritos – beans that have been mashed and fried, most often in lard, Salsa – generally an uncooked mixture of chile, tomatoes, onions, Sopaipilla – a puffed, fried bread, that's ate split and filled with honey-butter, or sometimes stuffed with meat, beans, cheese and chile sauce, Taco – a corn tortilla either fried crisp , or just softened, and filled with meats, cheese, or beans, and fresh chopped lettuce, onions and tomatoes and Tostadas which are corn tortilla chips, also, a open face corn tortilla covered with refrained beans, salsa, cheese, and chopped lettuce and tomato.