Harvard University Mexican Association of Students

The Evolution of Mexican Food in the US

  • Lugar: David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies Room S250
  • Fecha: Wednesday, 13-Nov-13
  • Contacto: Adrian Jinich (ajinich@gmail.com)
The Evolution of Mexican Food in the US

Pati Jinich is host of the Public Television series PATI'S MEXICAN TABLE, which is aired nationwide, is now in its third season, and was nominated for a 2013 Imagen Award. She is a cookbook author, food writer, cooking teacher and chef of the Mexican Cultural Institute in Washington, DC.

The Evolution of Mexican Food in the US

Some people think there are 32 regional cuisines of Mexico, as many as the number of states in the country. Others say there are as many as delineated regions, many within a state. I, for one, consider, there are as many as one can possibly count, taking into consideration the marked historical periods, family legacies, smaller community culinary traditions. What?s more, these days, one has to look at the evolution of Mexican food outside of its national borders.
Mexican communities that come from a particular region bring along culinary baggage that combines differently depending on where they settle. New regional cooking trends emerge. What?s more, for Mexicans who never crossed the border, but where the border crossed them (in the words from Los Tigres del Norte) their cooking evolved in peculiar ways as they became part of the United States.
From the infamous Tex-Mex Combo platter, to Fresh-Mex salads, to Cal-Mex Fish Tacos, to SoCal-Mex Burritos, to Chicago-French-Mex, to New-Mex and MEX-Tex, I find the movement of people and the evolution of their culture and cooking to be fascinating.
Being Mexican, or eating Mexican, has become part of the American experience. Who considers salsa, nachos or guacamole ethnic these days? I invite you to come share with me many of the stories that have given shape to what Mexican food is considered today.