Mexico's Feasts of Life

Patricia Quintana, Author Independent Distributors Group $39.95 (254p) ISBN 978-0-933031-22-7
This handsomely designed, lusciously photographed culinary portrait of Mexico is aimed at the true gourmet and bears the stamp of authenticity. Mexican author Quintana ( The Taste of Mexico ) traces her sensibilities to her great grandmother's origins in the southern state of Oaxaca, well-known for its strong pre-Columbian traditions, and associates each of the 200 or so dishes offered here with one of several national feasts or occasions. It appears that the grill, or comal , is closer to the heart of this cuisine than is the Mediterranean frying pan, and many--though by no means all--recipes can accommodate a low-cholesterol diet. The reader brought up on Tex-Mex will be surprised by the preponderance of delicate stews and sauces and, in the superb Lent section, fish soups slightly but significantly evolved from their Spanish origins. A concept like vanilla shrimp, nonetheless, is out on its own. It may also come as a shock to find garlic called for by the head rather than the clove. The beginning cook will find many of these recipes challenging, with complex procedures; experience in the kitchen is assumed. Menu planning, lamentably, is not included. Author tour. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 09/01/1989
Release date: 09/01/1989
Paperback - 256 pages - 978-1-57178-000-3
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