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Internationally available Mexican cookbooks

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IMHO, RG's point about foreigners bringing fresh eyes to an ethnic cuisine is valid. I've learned dozens of cuisines at a "greatest hits" level and books written by foreigners (usually someone who married into the cuisine) tend to be the most useful. This shouldn't be surprising. They're in the same position as me. Meanwhile, every time I've had an opportunity to query an ethnic as to his or her cuisine, what I mostly get is what mama or grandma did, but with little awareness of the cuisine as a whole. I've come to accept that this also isn't surprising.

Which is to say, Dakki, that I take your point. Kennedy, Bayless, etc., don't capture the complete diversity of Mexican cuisine. I never assumed they did. But, then, one can make a pretty good cassoulet without knowing the ins-and-outs of every version in Toulouse, Castelaundary and Carssonne.

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I personally love the book 1000 mexican recipes by Marge Poore. I have, and use, kennedy and bayliss books but this is the one i come back to time after time

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Which is to say, Dakki, that I take your point. Kennedy, Bayless, etc., don't capture the complete diversity of Mexican cuisine. I never assumed they did. But, then, one can make a pretty good cassoulet without knowing the ins-and-outs of every version in Toulouse, Castelaundary and Carssonne.

Unless I'm paranoid, I think the reference was more towards me than Kennedy or Bayless.

And that's OK!

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Got my first Kennedy book today (Cuisines). Nice! Some recipes (e.g. chorizos mexicanos) sound slightly unsafe, however ("mix ground meat with salt and spices and let age for a week", more or less). Ah well, it was a different time ;)

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Just a quick update on our feast. We did the following dishes:

  • various botanas (from salted almonds to marinated sardines ... sorry, I can't be more specific, that was done by my "co-chef") and cocktails
  • carne apache (tasted good, but based on optics, I definitely prefer steak tartare. Gray goo, anyone?)
  • a red and green salsa, frijoles refritos
  • tamales costeños with shrimp filling (The recipe is already on my blog, albeit in German only. Maybe it's because I had to use corn husks instead of banana leaves, or maybe my scoops were just too large, but I had to double the amount of dough to fill all the tamales.)
  • molcajete-style fryup (carne asada, queso, chorizo, some chiles, some sugar snaps as a textural replacement for nopales)
  • mole negro oaxaqueño (so that's what it's like to get a face full of pepper spray)

Originally, I wanted to make fresh tortillas, but we didn't really have the time, so that project has been postponed. Unfortunately, the stuff you can get in our mexican supermarket is dosed liberally with preservatives (even the frozen tortillas). And we had an inadequate setup for heating them. So now I've learned that cold corn tortilla tastes vile, while cold wheat tortillas are at least passable. Oh, and good tequila is fantastic!

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Congrats! Sounds really ambitious but fun. And thanks for reporting back. Too often people seem to pick one's brain and then disappear! 

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