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    Books: Cooking by Cuisine -> Cooking Mexican

    My Mexico : A Culinary Odyssey with More Than 300 Recipes


    Clarkson Potter
    Published: October 20, 1998
    ISBN: 0609602470

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    Book Description
    Every country should have a Diana Kennedy, someone steeped in its culture and cooking who cruises around recording all the local recipes and sharing them with the world. My Mexico is Kennedy's rambling record of forays in pursuit of dishes that might be of interest. Based on the recipes she found, such as Posole de Camarone, a brothy shrimp and dried-corn stew, sweet Green Mango Roll, and tiny new potatoes cooked Shepherd style, Kennedy's travels have been quite fruitful.

    Anyone may enjoy the wealth of recipes in this book, but only connoisseurs of Mexican cooking familiar with the varied and regional nature of its food are likely to appreciate the unusual nature of Kennedy's finds. Concentrating on what is unique, the author refers readers to her previous five works on Mexico for fundamental techniques or other background. Even the method for making masa in My Mexico is an uncommon one, presented to Kennedy by the woman who waters her plants.

    This literate work is rich in almost novelistic descriptions. Long passages describe her graphic observations. She shares her love of the country where she has lived since 1957 with equal measures of loving passion and curmudgeonly criticism.

    Charts and photos help show the variety of chiles and other foods that help give Mexican cooking its constant, often subtle variety. When recipes call for pulque, a mildly fermented juice from the agave plant, sour tunas, a kind of cactus fruit, or other ingredients you can't get, move on to her more accessible dishes or, as Kennedy did, let this book be a journey of discoveries. --Dana Jacobi

    Product Description:
    "Why my Mexico?" asks Diana Kennedy in her introduction to this long-awaited book. The answer is simple and obvious: it is a highly personal book about the Mexico she knows. And no one knows Mexico the way Diana does. When Diana Kennedy first came to Mexico more than forty years ago, she did not intend to become the country's premier gastronome. But that is what she has become, traveling endlessly, learning the culinary histories of families, hunting elusive recipes, falling under the spell of the beauty of a countryside that produces such a wealth of foods. She has published five books and is referred to variously as the Julia Child, the Escoffier, and the high priestess of Mexican cooking. Most important, she has taken as her eternal project to record not only the wealth of Mexican culinary knowledge and folklore but also the fascinating stories behind it all.

    My Mexico records Diana's recent wanderings, along with memories stored away from previous trips. With wondrous, novelistic prose, Diana tells the story behind her discovery of each dish, from the Pollo Almendrado (Chicken in Almond Sauce) she discovered in Oaxaca to the Estafado de Raya (Skate Stewed in Olive Oil) that delighted her in Coahuila. Yes, there are some fairly simple recipes for inexperienced cooks--look for the new guacamoles and the addictive chilatas. More complicated ones are for aficionados who know the intricacies of the ingredients.

    Times have changed greatly since Diana published her first book. More and more ingredients are available in the U.S., and more and more people have learned of the true joys of real Mexican cooking. One thing has not changed--Diana Kennedy's passion. For those who already are familiar with her work, this volume is a much-needed addition to your library. For those who are not, you are in for a treat of the first order.

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