Chamoy is a Mexican condiment made from dried apricot fruit, sugar, salt, chili powder, Roselle flower, and some acid juice, giving it a unique and distinct taste. It is trendy in Mexican culture, and it is practically their kitchen staple.
Chamoy serves as a condiment for a wide variety of food. It is very versatile and can go with literally everything, ranging from a dip for chips to use in juices to smoothies. It is also very incredible with fresh fruits, assorted nuts, used in coating cocktail glasses, and enjoyed in burritos.
The taste of chamoy can be quite hard to describe. However, if you love crossing boundaries and if trying out new things is your thing, you will love chamoy.
What does chamoy taste like? Chamoy has a very distinct taste; it is a combination of sweet, sour, salty, and spicy. The flavor profile of chamoy is bold and distinct. It is best described as a lot of things going off at once with a hint of umami and some tartness.
If you think about spicy, sweet, sour, or salty dishes, chamoy may leave you perplexed because it’s everything in one. This Mexican condiment is a riot of flavor, and the taste can be a bit bewildering, especially to people whose concept of flavor is compartmentalized.
Nutritional Benefits of Chamoy
This condiment has some nutritional benefits. Research has shown that Chamoy can help with sore throats, cough, and the common cold. Some people have also observed that eating Chamoy before their main meals helps digestion. If you have difficulty swallowing food, chamoy contains pectin properties that help the food go down easily.
There is no science to back why chamoy has these properties, but research has chalked it up to the organic acids and polyphenols present in the condiment.
Chamoy could be a lot of trouble because of its high sugar content. Some believe it is making the whole of Mexico a diabetic country. It is as common and well-loved as peanut butter is in the United States.
Chamoy does contain a high amount of sugar, but when consumed in moderation could be beneficial. Too much of anything is bad. You can enjoy chamoy without worrying about its side effects if you eat it in small amounts.
Culinary Uses of Chamoy
You can make chamoy from the comfort of your home and have control of everything that goes into it. All the ingredients combined in chamoy give it its unique and distinct taste. The dried apricots give a bit of sweetness/saltiness.
It gets that nice red color from the Roselle flowers. The chili powder is what gives it a spicy taste, sugar adds to its sweetness, and Tajin adds a bit of saltiness, and extra salt is added to give it the extra salty taste that is needed.
To make chamoy, in a saucepan, add the apricot, Arbol chili, Roselle flower, and guajillo. Then, add 1½ cups of water and bring to a boil on medium to high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes until the apricots are completely soft and the water is a deep crimson color.
Allow to cool for about 10 minutes before transferring the mixture into a blender. Add sugar, lime juice, tajin, and salt and blend until smooth. You can proceed to use a sieve to get rid of any particles before transferring them into an airtight container.
Chamoy goes well with various dishes and recipes, ranging from fruits to smoothies, vegetables, and juices. It can be enjoyed with literally everything as its unique tastes elevate the taste and flavor of whatever you have it with.
Chamoy is used in most Mexican street food. It brings a sweet spice to savory dishes and is often used on foods like burritos, nachos, steaks, tacos, roasted vegetables, chips, or used as a marinade. It can be found in gummy candies, drizzled on fresh fruits like mango, apple, and watermelon.
You can enjoy chamoy with tortilla chips. It also works as toppings for crunchy vegetables like carrot, celery, and cucumber. Chamoy is also used in making popular Mexican street foods like mangonada, chamoy candy, chamoy rim dip, and tostiloco.
What is the Origin of Chamoy? Where to Procure it?
The origin of Chamoy is unclear. Chamoy didn’t become popular in Mexico until 1990. The speculation is that it originated from Asia, China, to be more precise, and was brought to Mexico by immigrants.
Another theory has it that chamoy is the Mexican version of Japanese umeboshi, which is pickled ume fruits. However, the Mexican version has adapted to using dried apricots and mango instead of just ume fruits. Several other theories connect its origin to Chinese, Vietnamese, or Filipino foods.
Chamoy can be gotten in most grocery stores around you. If there is a section for Mexican items in the store, you will find it there. But if you can’t find any store-bought chamoy in grocery stores around you, you can order it online on Amazon or check out sites for Mexican items or supermarkets.
Is Chamoy Vegan?
Yes, Chamoy is Vegan. If you are a vegan looking to try this fantastic condiment, you can. It is made with a hundred percent natural ingredients with no form of animal or anything relating to an animal in it. Preparing your chamoy at home is even better as it is free of artificial ingredients or preservatives.
Facts You Don’t Know About Chamoy
- Most of the chamoy made today is processed and doesn’t even contain fruits. It is full of preservatives and enhanced high fructose corn syrup that can be dangerous for your health in excessive amounts. Processed chamoy uses citric acid to mimic the tart flavor of the real deal.
- In Mexico, chamoy can be had in different forms; it can be a sauce or seasoning powder.