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Mexican-American Cuisine


Defining Mexican-American food is difficult due to its incredibly diverse roots and traditions. This unique style of cuisine varies significantly from Mexican and Latin American cuisines, fusing Native American and Hispanic influences stemming from three centuries of first Spanish and later Mexican rule. In Mexican-American Cuisine, renowned authority in Latino culture Ilan Stavans and 10 other experts in southwestern cuisine explore the food itself and associated traditions. The book presents nine scholarly essays that examine philosophical understandings of Mexican-American cuisine. Covering both platillos principales (main dishes) and postres (desserts), the authors serve up a sideboard of anthropological, ethnographic, sociological, and culinary observations. Essay topics include the boundaries between Mexican and Mexican-American food, the history and uses of the chile, and the derivations of Mexican cuisine. Readers are also treated to recipes and recommendations by 19th-century California chef EncarnaciĆ³n Pinedo who explores "The Art of Cooking."