Papas A La Mexicana

Papas A La Mexicana

The traditional “A La Mexicana” style is the tricolored combination of tomatoes, onions, and chiles—the colors of the Mexican flag.  Straightforward and nutritious.

Papas A La Mexicana is a staple in south Texas and northeastern Mexico, the Texas Mexican region. I adapted this recipe from one that was published in Homero Vera’s monthly journal of Mexican American culture, El Mesteño. Homero lives in Sarita, Texas, has a ranch in Premont, and is an expert on all things Texas Mexican.

El Mesteño Magazine

Published from 1998 to 2001, it is a remarkable magazine that documents the vibrant Texas Mexican culture and traditions.  Food recipes are  in every one of El Mesteño monthly magazines.

In an interview with Sylvia R. Longoria of the Corpus Christi Caller-Times, Vera says that although Mexican Americans have a long and valiant history in South Texas, “not enough of this local history is taught in our schools.”  He goes on to say, “I want family histories and the traditions of South Texas to continue for generations.”

Mexican American history belongs in all Texas school curricula, says Vera, adding that he hopes that “the history I’m preserving one day benefits the children in schools. We have tremendous backgrounds worth exploring and documenting.”

Although he stopped publishing this important magazine, he offers some of the stories and essays online.

You can see this “Papas A La Mexicana” recipe, and many others, in my new cookbook, “Don’t Count The Tortillas: The Art of Texas Mexican Cooking”

New Texas Mexican CookbookOver 100 Recipes, kitchen-tested with easy-to-follow directions and insider cooking tips.
Green enchiladas | Chilaquiles | Tacos Al Pastor | Red Snapper Soup | Pumpkin Candy
& delicious pastries like this Strawberry-Jícama turnover!

Recipe for Papas A La Mexicana

Ingredients (serves 6)

2 Tbs Canola or vegetable oil
3 cups red waxy potatoes cut in 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup white onion, medium diced
1/2 cup tomato, medium diced
1 chile serrano, minced, about 2 tablespoons
1/2 teaspoon salt


1. In a skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat and add the potatoes and onions, cooking them for 8 minutes or until potatoes are cooked, slightly crisped, and the onions are translucent.

2. Add the chile serrano and cook another 2 minutes.

3. Add the tomato and salt and cook 1 minute more.

Serve with beans and tortillas. It’s delicious for breakfast or lunch and makes excellent tacos. Actually, it’s great for dinner too.

NOTE: If you found my article helpful, I invite you to follow me on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, or subscribe below for updates (I'll email you new essays when I publish them).

14 thoughts on “Papas A La Mexicana”

  • im wondering if its possible to access editions of el mesteno somewhere either a library or online??

  • I watched the episode on Truly Texas Mexican on PBS. I agree that more attention needs to be paid to our history. Understanding aside, this says more about our ideas on discrimination than anything else. The Professor said that we have tomatoes because the Indian harvested them. How many other things have we been misled about. Aren’t we strong enough that we could be even stronger if we allowed all qualified people or ideas their fair shot. I continue to be surprised by how little I know. Ha!

  • Military husband and I were stationed in Germany in early 70s and got together with other Tejano families to eat and listen to music on our treasured record players. My husband would also take tacos to the single soldiers in the barracks. We were all craving cabeza, so one day the men went to a German butcher shop. Told the butcher “fur den hund” (for the dog) and put it in the trunk. When the MPs checked the trunk, they jumped back because the head that was staring at them was greatly unexpected. We cooked it in the oven because we didn’t want to get in trouble for digging a hole in a US government installation. In Puerto Rico, our Tejano group stationed there threw a big party with tamales, etc., for a mariachi group who lived in PR to show our appreciation for their great music and friendship. It was by invitation only so no one objected when the party started with the mariachi playing the Mexican national anthem! (We are both originally from Crystal City, TX.) Great show on PBS! Gracias!

  • Just watched your special on Amazon ..Cabeza de Poso…the memories floided my mind ..y si es un modo de ser ..nuestra cocina es vida ..thank you for your journey.

  • Hi, Pablo. I’m happy to read your comments, thank you so much for sharing them, and so glad you liked our documentary feature film. Please tell all your friends to watch. It is an Amazon Prime movie so it is free if you subscribe. It’s also on Apple TV, Google Play and YouTube.
    The Mesteño magazine is no longer published. You can contact the publisher who is in the movie, Homero Vera, on his Facebook page. I think he may have a website with articles.

  • Watched Truly Texas Mexican ,absolutely fantastic. i consider myself a Texican. This program brought back memories of both Parents cooking in the kitchen or my Dad cooking outside on the “parrilla” he had. This has made me want to bring back those memories of cooking.
    I would like to also subcribe to El Mesteno Magazine,but I cant find a website for it.

  • I watched Truly Texas Mexican on PBS and was surprised of how much I didn’t know of food culture. It was a great show!! Thanks PBS!!

  • I would love to subscribe to el mesteno jouranal. I would like A hard copy if possible.

  • Love Mexican and Texas Mexican food. Mom and I share food memories and family stories. Mom is from Texas, she is 87 meI was born Illinois and la raza.

Leave a Reply

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