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Zapotec Identity: The Cuisine of Abigail Mendoza And Her Sisters

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by Claudia Espinoza
Regular price $95.00

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Imported from Mexico, these books are from a limited printing of 2000 English-language copies.

Abigail Mendoza is the chef and co-owner of Tlamanalli, a restaurant in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico where she and her sisters serve traditional foods of the Zapotec people who have inhabited the region for millennia. She has been celebrated by writers as varied as Diana Kennedy and Anthony Bourdain.

This handsome book presents Mendoza's cooking by rooting it firmly in Zapotec tradition and culture. A photospread of commonly used utensils and three others of local produce make it clear that Mendoza's cooking is tied to foodways of longstanding. 

Throughout the book there are lengthy quotations from Abigail Mendoza as well her sisters which illuminate traditional practices and ideas, from religious observances and weddings to funeral foods and dishes prepared to satisfy dangerous cravings. A portrait of everyday family life emerges alongside the food.

Most recipes are illustrated with full page photographs of attractively, simply presented food. Among the regional specialties:

  • pork backbone with white beans in green mole
  • squash stem soup with corn and zucchini
  • salad of nopales and avocado leaves (a Lenten specialty)
  • rack of lamb in garlic salsa
  • chicharon with blood sausage salsa
  • white bean casserole with battered fish


Hardcover. Color photographs throughout. While the sample photographs show Spanish-language text, these copies of the book are in English. If you would like the book in Spanish, click here.

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