Books: Cooking by Cuisine -> Cooking American
The Tex-Mex Cookbook : A History in Recipes and Photos
Published: June 15, 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
Walsh, the Houston Press's restaurant critic, lifts the veil on the often misunderstood, widely undefined concept of authentic Tex-Mex, providing the nuts and bolts of one of America's finestandmdash;and oldestandmdash;indigenous
cuisines. While Tex-Mex is loosely described as a fusion of Texan and Mexican cuisines, Walsh sheds a much needed light on the intricacies of the food he calls "that loveable ugly duckling." He outlines Tex-Mex's main ingredients (chile peppers, lard and
cornhusks), and along the way not only gives the history behind the proliferation of Mexican ingredients into American cuisine, but unapologetically rationalizes the need for unrefined staples such as Velveeta cheese and Fritos corn chips in customary
Tex-Mex recipes. Walsh fills the pages with stick-to-your-ribs fare like chili-slathered Truck Stop Enchiladas and Chili Mac (spaghetti and chili con carne), along with basics like Ninfa's Showcase Fajitas and Frozen Margaritas. As the chapters progress,
Walsh builds upon earlier dishes, offering alternatives and tips. Sidebars and vintage photographs lend a personal feel, transforming this cookbook from a mere reference guide to an inviting memoir and social history of a food most Americans forget is
unique to their homeland. Walsh deserves credit for taking on the difficult task of organizing the desires, beliefs and strife of the people who made Tex-Mex the respected cuisine it is today. Photos.
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Nobody knows Tex-Mex like Houstonian Robb Walsh, who has spent much of his career researching the vibrant Mexican-American-and-Texan kitchen. Now he shares all the savory
details in a comprehensive Tex-Mex bible, filled with outsize characters, fascinating stories, rare archival photographs, and of course great recipes for making an easy-to-elegant range of classic and nuevo dishes.
The Tex-Mex Cookbook takes
readers from the Spanish missions of the eighteenth century to the nineteenth century's short-lived Republic of Texas and beyond, capturing the flavor of old San Antonio's Chile Queens as well as the distinctively homespun inventions of rural border
towns in lively prose and historic photographs. From the birth of corn chip mania to the booming Tex-Mex aisles in supermarkets across America, The Tex-Mex Cookbook reveals how "America's oldest regional cuisine" became a nationwide passion. Recipes
include tacos, enchiladas, and authentic Texas chili, as well as fajitas, nachos, and Frito pie. Upscale contemporary selections such as Wild Mushroom Chalupas and Prickly Pear Margaritas bring this western saga up-to-the-minute.
A food fiesta
that will delight home cooks and history buffs alike, The Tex-Mex Cookbook celebrates this inimitable culinary culture with the fact-filled, fun-filled tribute it deserves.
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