COOKING & FOOD

Chicano Eats: Recipes from My Mexican-American Kitchen

Harper Design. Jun. 2020. 224p. ISBN 9780062917379. $35. COOKING
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As a child of Mexican immigrants, Castillo developed a fondness for Mexican cuisine and its skillful preparation during family visits to Colima, Mexico. From his own home in California, Castillo worked hard to adapt recipes from family favorites, which he shares on his blog Chicano Eats. His first cookbook is not only a joyful compilation of these meals but also an autobiographical glimpse into his life as a gay Chicano. Chapters on staples, such as tacos and tortas, as well as main dishes, appetizers, desserts, and beverages, beginning with the "Essentials" of common ingredients and cooking tools, feature helpful visuals and descriptions of various Mexican cheeses and chiles. While some meals are complex in ingredients, Castillo provides shortcuts (e.g., frozen waffle fries as a base for Carnitas Poutine) and vegetarian options. In true Chicano fashion, many dishes extend beyond Mexican classics to include American favorites like chicken wings, burgers, and barbecue.
VERDICT Readers will be inspired to try Castillo’s accessible and appetizing Mexican American family recipes.

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