BOOKS OF INTEREST

For adults & children

All of the books listed contain content about food or food history that you might find interesting!

 

2019

From an early age, Chef Adán Medrano understood the power of cooking to enthrall, to grant artistic agency, and to solidify identity as well as succor and hospitality. In this second cookbook, he documents and explains native ingredients, traditional techniques, and innovations in casero (home-style) Mexican American cooking in Texas.

2018

Every kid in Lola's school was from somewhere else. 
Hers was a school of faraway places.

So when Lola's teacher asks the students to draw a picture of where their families immigrated from, all the kids are excited. Except Lola. She can't remember The Island—she left when she was just a baby. But with the help of her family and friends, and their memories—joyous, fantastical, heartbreaking, and frightening—Lola's imagination takes her on an extraordinary journey back to The Island. 

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2017

2018 James Beard Award Winner: Best American Cookbook

Here is real food—our indigenous American fruits and vegetables, the wild and foraged ingredients, game and fish. Locally sourced, seasonal, “clean” ingredients and nose-to-tail cooking are nothing new to Sean Sherman, the Oglala Lakota chef and founder of The Sioux Chef. In his breakout book, The Sioux Chef’s Indigenous Kitchen, Sherman shares his approach to creating boldly seasoned foods that are vibrant, healthful, at once elegant and easy. 

2017

A renowned culinary historian offers a fresh perspective on our most divisive cultural issue, race, in this illuminating memoir of Southern cuisine and food culture that traces his ancestry—both black and white—through food, from Africa to America and slavery to freedom.

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2015

More than just a cookbook, Decolonize Your Diet redefines what is meant by "traditional" Mexican food by reaching back through hundreds of years of history to reclaim heritage crops as a source of protection from modern diseases of development. Authors  promote a diet that is rich in plants indigenous to the Americas and are passionate about the idea that Latinxs in America, specifically Mexicans, need to ditch the fast food and return to their own culture's food roots for both physical health and spiritual fulfillment.

2015

From highly acclaimed author Jenkins and Caldecott Medal–winning illustrator Blackall comes a fascinating picture book in which four families, in four different cities, over four centuries, make the same delicious dessert: blackberry fool. This richly detailed book ingeniously shows how food, technology, and even families have changed throughout American history.

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2014

Over thousands of years, Native Americans in what is now Texas passed down their ways of roasting, boiling, steaming, salting, drying, grinding, and blending. From one generation to another, these ancestors of Texas’s Mexican American community lent their culinary skills to combining native and foreign ingredients into the flavor profile of indigenous Texas Mexican cooking today.

2013

Everyone loves chocolate, right? But how many people actually know where chocolate comes from? How it’s made? Or that monkeys do their part to help this delicious sweet exist?

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2012

Gran Cocina Latina unifies the vast culinary landscape of the Latin world, from Mexico to Argentina and all the Spanish-speaking countries of the Caribbean. In one volume it gives home cooks, armchair travelers, and curious chefs the first comprehensive collection of recipes from this region. An inquisitive historian and a successful restaurateur, Maricel E. Presilla has spent more than thirty years visiting each country personally. She’s gathered more than 500 recipes for the full range of dishes, from the foundational adobos and sofritos to empanadas and tamales to ceviches and moles to sancocho and desserts such as flan and tres leches cake.

2012

Jade is a young girl who lives in a village next to a towering volcano. On its peak lives a Mountain Spirit who makes his presence known by rumbling the earth, filling the sky with smoke, and pouring lava down the mountainside. Angered by those who forget to honor him for providing their harvest, the Mountain Spirit has stopped sending rain to Jade’s village and the people are faced with the possibility of having to abandon their homes and land.

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2012

In the late nineteenth century, many Central American governments and countries sought to fill low-paying jobs and develop their economies by recruiting black American and West Indian laborers. Frederick Opie offers a revisionist interpretation of these workers, who were often depicted as simple victims with little, if any, enduring legacy.

2011

Popularized by such best-selling authors as Michael Pollan, Barbara Kingsolver, and Eric Schlosser, a growing food movement urges us to support sustainable agriculture by eating fresh food produced on local family farms. But many low-income neighborhoods and communities of color have been systematically deprived of access to healthy and sustainable food.

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2010

Frederick Douglass Opie deconstructs and compares the foodways of people of African descent throughout the Americas, interprets the health legacies of black culinary traditions, and explains the concept of soul itself, revealing soul food to be an amalgamation of West and Central African social and cultural influences as well as the adaptations blacks made to the conditions of slavery and freedom in the Americas.

2010

Abuela's visits from Mexico are always full of excitement for young Sabrina. She can't wait to see what's in her grandmother's yellow suitcase covered in stickers from all the places she has visited. Opening it is like opening a treasure chest, and this year is no different. Inside are a host of riches: colorful ribbons, a clay whistle shaped like a bird, a drum, and the strong smell of chocolate.

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2009

Ever wonder where chocolate came from? We have the Mayan king Kukulkán to thank. Kukulkán is more than a king--he is also a god. One day he brings his people an amazing gift: a chocolate tree! But there is just one problem. Kukulkán's brother, Night Jaguar, doesn't want regular people to have chocolate. He thinks only gods should eat the tempting treat. Will Night Jaguar prevail? Or will the Mayans get to keep their chocolate tree?

2009

Africa’s art of cooking is a key part of its history. All too often Africa is associated with famine, but in Stirring the Pot, James C. McCann describes how the ingredients, the practices, and the varied tastes of African cuisine comprise a body of historically gendered knowledge practiced and perfected in households across Africa's diverse human and ecological landscape. McCann
reveals how Africa’s tastes and culinary practices are integral to the understanding of African history and more generally to the new literature on food as social history.

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2003

A landmark of American cuisine first published in 1898 as El cocinero español (The Spanish Cook), Encarnación's Kitchen is the first cookbook written by a Hispanic in the United States, as well as the first recording of Californio food—Mexican cuisine prepared by the Spanish-speaking peoples born in California. Pinedo's cookbook offers a fascinating look into the kitchens of a long-ago culture that continues to exert its influence today.

2003

Thirty years ago, Alfred Crosby published a small work that illuminated a simple point, that the most important changes brought on by the voyages of Columbus were not social or political, but biological in nature. The book told the story of how 1492 sparked the movement of organisms, both large and small, in both directions across the Atlantic. This Columbian exchange, between the Old World and the New, changed the history of our planet drastically and forever.

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2003

Millions of immigrants were drawn to American shores, not by the mythic streets paved with gold, but rather by its tables heaped with food. How they experienced the realities of America's abundant food--its meat and white bread, its butter and cheese, fruits and vegetables, coffee and beer--reflected their earlier deprivations and shaped their ethnic practices in the new land. This book looks specifically at Italian, Irish, and Jewish foodways.

2001

Few Americans identify slavery with the cultivation of rice, yet rice was a major plantation crop during the first three centuries of settlement in the Americas. Rice accompanied African slaves across the Middle Passage throughout the New World to Brazil, the Caribbean, and the southern United States. By the middle of the eighteenth century, rice plantations in South Carolina and the black slaves who worked them had created one of the most profitable economies in the world.

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2001

This social history of one remote corner of Spain's colonial American empire uses marriage as a window into intimate social relations, examining the Spanish conquest of America and its impact on a group of indigenous peoples, the Pueblo Indians, seen in large part from their point of view.

1998

From an award-winning Native American storyteller comes this captivating re-telling of a Cherokee legend, which explains how strawberries came to be.

Long ago, the first man and woman quarreled. The woman left in anger, but the Sun sent tempting berries to Earth to slow the wife's retreat. Luminous paintings perfectly complement this simple, lyrical text. 

1994

This is an account of many of the important and happy events in Frida Kahlo's life as remembered by her step-daughter Guadalupe Rivera. She has structured the book around 12 significant events taken from the year she spent living with Frida and her father. The stories include recipes that Frida and Guadalupe cooked together.

1986

In this eye-opening study, Sidney Mintz shows how Europeans and Americans transformed sugar from a rare foreign luxury to a commonplace necessity of modern life, and how it changed the history of capitalism and industry.

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Boston, MA

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