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The Tex-Mex Cookbook: A History in Recipes and Photos

4.32  ·  Rating Details ·  290 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
Join Texas food writer Robb Walsh on a grand tour complete with larger-than-life characters, colorful yarns, rare archival photographs, and a savory assortment of crispy, crunchy Tex-Mex foods.

From the Mexican pioneers of the sixteenth century, who first brought horses and cattle to Texas, to the Spanish mission era when cumin and garlic were introduced, to the 1890s when
Paperback, 288 pages
Published June 15th 2004 by Ten Speed Press
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Dixie Diamond
Oct 08, 2009 Dixie Diamond rated it it was amazing
Mom and I met up for dinner tonight and Mom promised to give me her charro beans, since she almost never likes beans. Out of curiosity, though, she tasted them first . . . and the proceeded to finish off the whole bowl. She also got an order to take home.

I came home and went through all my Texas cookbooks looking for beans and this one looks closest, right down to the jalapeño rings. I think I'll have to try this one instead next time instead of the usual ranch beans.

This is a fun read. It's not
Lise Petrauskas
Apr 09, 2013 Lise Petrauskas rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cooking
Very delicious and easy recipes stripped to their simplest and most authentic form. The beef and potato tamale filling is so good. Made it for our Christmas tamales last year and it's a keeper. I also particularly love the stacked enchiladas and have made them for Christmas in years past. The from scratch yet easy enchilada sauce especially was a revelation. Once I grew enough pasilla negra chilies to make it homegrown, too.

The history and photographs documenting the development of Tex-Mex are
Nov 07, 2008 Amri rated it liked it
Cookbook FAIL. There are only a few recipes and even fewer of them inspired me to make them and I'm not a judgy cook. But as a history of Tex-Mex, it's very interesting. He follows interesting trends in Tex-Mex and I've learned that real, true Tex-Mex is kinda mediocre. Everyone says oh, I hate real Mexican food but Tex-Mex? yum. Well, it seems that Tex-Mex is the cheap enchiladas with red sauce and onions. It's chili with ground beef and no beans. I mean, I like this stuff but whatever the "fus ...more
The recipes alone are well worth the price of this cookbook. The history behind the recipes, as well as the people and the restaurants, made it even better. I taught a cooking class of 6 students how to make the Original Cheese Enchiladas recipe from this book, along with a few other TexMex recipes, and one of the many positive comments made to me by my students was that eating my TexMex was a religious experience for her. I concur. The first time that I made the Cheese Enchiladas, I thought tha ...more
May 18, 2008 Msgold rated it it was amazing
The recipes in this book are very economical and delicious. Last night I made the cheese enchiladas with chili gravy...they really tasted great. So far I have also used the recipes for mango salsa, pico de gallo, arroz con pollo, and stewed chicken, and they all came out really well. There is also a recipe for something called fritoque, which is made with old tortilla chips and a can of refried beans. There are also a lot of explanations about how some of the recipes came about. If you are tryin ...more
Nov 13, 2009 Emily rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Lavishly illustrated with historical photos and accounts, this book is as much fun to read for the cultural history as it is to use for cooking. They also include profiles of key cooks and restaurant managers who helped introduce new dishes along the way like the frozen margarita.

The recipes include traditional techniques and modern adjustments for convenience, and are clearly written for any level of cook.
Feb 03, 2013 Lynn rated it really liked it
I've had this cookbook for awhile but never really sat down and looked at it. It gives a wonderful, but brief, history of Tex-Mex food in the United States, the food that most people think of as Mexican but is really a hybrid. Mexican food is like US food, some similar things that are made differently from region to region (think corn bread) and some just served in each region. I found a few recipes in here I really want to try, so far I'd only used the recipe for frijoles refritos.
Neil P
Oct 02, 2016 Neil P rated it it was amazing
My copy of The Tex-Mex Cookbook is a splattered mess, a testament to how often I use it. The recipes are as delicious as they are simple. After dinner is underway, read some of the wonderful histories about the dishes and the people who created them that are sprinkled throughout the book. I wish every cookbook was written like this!
Jan 06, 2010 Mike added it
It's my favorite kind of cookbook: one that has both recipes AND history. Walsh discusses Tex-Mex from its origins in the 19th century (and earlier), through its disparagement by Diana Kennedy in the 1970s, and on to its expansion throughout the United States and the world -- even, weirdly, into Mexico itself. ¡Viva la Tex-Mex!
Sep 17, 2016 Naomi rated it really liked it
A really unique cookbook that mixes great historical stories in with some great recipes. Just be aware that the majority of these recipes are more complex to make. Relocating to South Texas two years ago and LOVING San Antonio, I was interested in the stories Mr. Walsh included and found them fascinating.
Feb 16, 2013 Aileen rated it liked it
I like the collection of stories, pictures, and experiences of this book better than the recipes, but I think that I will always appreciate this cookbook as a jumping off point. Right now I'm still so new to Tex-Mex and I'm always very hesitant to experiment around with cooking styles that are unfamiliar to me. I love this gift and will always treasure what it stands for!
Jun 21, 2009 Jo rated it really liked it
Try the chocolate flan cake..... you won't regret it. This cake haunted me, calling me to the frig for "just one more slice" till it was gone. If you are trying to lose weight, don't bake this, but if you are a lover of food and say " oh heck" enjoy.
John Orman
Jan 10, 2014 John Orman rated it really liked it
I mainly studied this book for recipes where green chile could be used==lots of it!. I really liked the ones for tamales, West Texas enchiladas, tacos--and those delightful Margarita drinks!

Great recipes with many helpful and colorful photos!
Ann Contella
Oct 16, 2016 Ann Contella rated it it was amazing
Recipes from some of my favorite Texas restaurants, and loaded with extremely interesting history. Immigrant experience, Chili Queens, cowboys, and much more! I recently moved from Texas to Oregon. This make me miss this yummy cuisine even more than I already did.
May 28, 2008 Sarah rated it it was amazing
Really awesome recipes and some good historical references about Tex-Mex food and how some stuff originated. I would highly recommend it to any Texan who is unlucky enough to be out there in the big, old world and unable to get some decent Tex-Mex. This book will help you make it yourself!
Dec 21, 2013 Leigh rated it liked it
Fascinating look at the history of Tex-Mex cooking in Texas. However, it will make you reevaluate what you think you know about Tex-Mex. I finally decided "oh to hell with it, I'll just eat whatever tastes good to me." Which is really the best way to eat, period.
Marcia Chapman
Jun 28, 2010 Marcia Chapman rated it it was amazing
This is a fantastic cookbook with lots of history and straightforward recipes. Cowboy beans taste just like restaurants and are easy to make (and healthy). Don't mix your peppers up. My Macho Chile is a bit more macho than I think it's supposed to be!
Oct 21, 2010 Macario rated it it was amazing
Tried and true Tex-Mex recipes that I have used for a couple of years now at home. Excellent Tamale recipe. This book outlines a lot of historical information as it pertains to Tex Mex cooking and what brought about this style of cooking here and around the world.
Aug 05, 2011 Scott rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cooking
I wasn't sure whether I was buying this for the recipes or the history--in the end, I bought it for both.
Bill Lenoir
Jul 03, 2014 Bill Lenoir rated it it was amazing
This is what a cook book should be: more than just recipes. This is a history of the cuisine. Great photos, too.
Jun 21, 2009 Lynne rated it it was ok
Although parts of the history sections were somewhat interesting, I wasn't interested in any of the recipes.
Edna Lucia
Mar 15, 2011 Edna Lucia rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kitchen-shelf
Wonderfully illustrated history of Tex-Mex, this book should be required reading for all Texpats abroad.
Aug 14, 2016 Karen rated it it was amazing
As a San Antonio native, I found this book so interesting due in part to the recipes, but the history of how Tex-Mex came about is what makes this book pop, Can't wait to try some of the dishes
Feb 11, 2012 Matthew rated it it was amazing
Being that I'm a transplanted Texan in England, I've made multiple recipes from this book. They have all been excellent and authentic. It tithes me over waiting for my next trip back home!
Nov 25, 2014 Krista rated it it was amazing
I love Robb Walsh's books. Not only do you get great recipes, you get the story behind them and the rich history of Texas and its peoples.
Jamira Calais
Jamira Calais rated it it was amazing
Aug 03, 2016
Will Derousse
Will Derousse rated it really liked it
Apr 01, 2014
Douglas Ballinger
Douglas Ballinger rated it really liked it
Feb 02, 2016
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Apr 09, 2009
Safé Bejaoui
Safé Bejaoui rated it it was amazing
Feb 06, 2017
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Robb Walsh is the author of four previous Texas cookbooks, including The Tex-Mex Cookbook. He is also the food critic for the Houston Press.

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