Mexican Flavors: Contemporary Recipes from Camp San Miguel
Author Hugh Carpenter and photographer Terri Sandison have chosen a northern Mexican town of Camp San Miguel as a focus of their Mexican cookbook, Mexican Flavors. A useful introduction discusses fresh and dried chilies and other essential Mexican ingredients.
Carpenter stresses that his book is for American home cooks with Mexican flavors and, true enough, this is not a Mexican cookbook. It has contemporary American recipes with Mexican ingredients, including such non-Mexican items as pesto, risotto, rice pilaf, wild rice and chocolate chip cookies though they are flavored with Mexican ingredients. The traditional chiles rellenos has untraditional goat cheese, for example. Don’t expect easy and quick recipes: they are mostly rather complex with long list of ingredients (mostly available in any well-stocked market), meant for cooking with plenty of time on hand (meatballs with fifteen ingredients). Many recipes are different, such as tangerine-serrano salsa. Recipe layout is excellent, with recipes on single and facing pages. Recipe instructions are easy to follow. Chapters are logical from appetizers to desserts and drinks. Head notes are good and worth reading. Photo illustrations are also good but not outstanding; they show local scenery, people and foods. Index is nicely cross referenced.
Hugh Carpenter, Teri Sandison, Photographer