Cover image for Mexican cooking for dummies
Mexican cooking for dummies
Milliken, Mary Sue.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Foster City, CA : IDG Books Worldwide, [1999]

Physical Description:
xxii, 312 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of color plates : illustrations (some color) ; 24 cm.
General Note:
Includes index.
Subject Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
TX716.M4 M55 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Spice up your soups and add some zest to the rest! Mexican Cooking For Dummies can inspire your cooking, improve your Spanish, and give you that south-of-the-border soul. Chefs Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken have attempted to reign in their vast knowledge of Mexican food and present it in that familiar ...For Dummies style that you've come to appreciate. Discover their wide array of standard Mexican ingredients. From avocados to epazote, they give you the hints and friendly advice you'll need in order to select the best ingredients for your meals.

Packed with more than 100 recipes, Mexican Cooking For Dummies covers a wide array of dishes, drinks, and appetizers. Master the simple dishes, such as tortas and tacos, while washing them down with horchata or sangria. Soon, you'll be hosting your own fiestas, starting your guests off with salsas and ceviches before moving on to the main dish. Will it be the cumin-and-chile-marinated skirt steak or the baked salmon in salsa verde? Either way, you're sure to impress!

The authors cover the staples (such as rice, beans, tortillas, and vegetables) and then guide you on a discovery tour that includes traditional moles and menudos. Save some room for the wide selection of desert recipes. Pick up Mexican Cooking For Dummies, and in no time, you'll be swinging spicy cilantro-covered dishes out of your kitchen and making your guests shout "Ole!"

Author Notes

Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken, are radio and TV personalities, chef/owners of the Border Grill restaurants in Las Vegas and Santa Monica as well as Ciudad in Los Angeles, and the authors of five cookbooks.

Table of Contents

Introductionp. 1
How to Use This Bookp. 1
How This Book Is Organizedp. 1
Part I Getting the Juices Flowingp. 2
Part II Taking a Quick Tripp. 2
Part III Enjoying an Extended Tourp. 2
Part IV Menus for Every Occasionp. 2
Part V The Part of Tensp. 2
Part VI Appendixesp. 3
Conventions Used in This Bookp. 3
Icons Used in This Bookp. 4
Part I Getting the Juices Flowingp. 5
Chapter 1 Understanding Mexican Cookingp. 7
Dispelling Mexican Cooking Mythsp. 7
Myth #1 Mexican food is too spicyp. 8
Myth #2 Mexican food is too heavyp. 9
Myth #3 Mexican food is hard to cookp. 9
Getting Started with Mexican Cookingp. 9
Keeping things manageablep. 9
Experimenting with chilesp. 10
Entertaining, Mexican stylep. 10
Keeping your mind (and mouth) open to new experiencesp. 10
Chapter 2 Ingredients for Mexican Cookingp. 13
Fruits and Vegetablesp. 13
Avocadop. 13
Banana leavesp. 15
Cactus paddlesp. 16
Chayotep. 16
Corn husksp. 17
Jicamap. 17
Limep. 18
Plantainsp. 20
Tomatillosp. 20
Chiles 101p. 21
Shopping for chilesp. 22
Handling fresh chilesp. 22
Plumping up dried chilesp. 23
Types of chilesp. 23
Herbsp. 28
Cilantrop. 28
Epazotep. 29
Oreganop. 30
The Spice Shelfp. 30
Cuminp. 30
Cinnamonp. 31
Nuts, Seeds, and Seasoning Pastesp. 31
Annatto seed and achiote pastep. 31
Tamarind seeds and pastep. 32
Coconutp. 33
Pepitasp. 33
Beans and Starchesp. 34
Beansp. 34
Tortillasp. 35
Masa harinap. 35
The Mexican Dairyp. 35
Anejop. 35
Panelap. 36
Mexican manchegop. 36
Cremap. 36
The cheese mixp. 36
Olivesp. 37
Chapter 3 Mastering a Few Simple Tools and Techniquesp. 39
Equipping Your Kitchenp. 39
Blendersp. 41
Stovetop grills and griddlesp. 41
Tortilla pressesp. 42
Bean mashersp. 43
Steamersp. 43
Tackling a Few Techniquesp. 43
Toasting and seeding vegetables and seedsp. 43
Ready, set, pureep. 45
Welcome to the beaneryp. 45
Poppin' peppercorns for flavorp. 46
Mexican cooking lightp. 46
Part II Taking a Quick Tripp. 49
Chapter 4 Bright Lights, Big Beveragesp. 51
Eye-Openersp. 51
Afternoon Refreshersp. 54
Party Boostersp. 58
Chapter 5 Hot Salsas, Cool Dips, and Refreshing Cevichesp. 67
Scintillating Salsasp. 67
Maximum Dipsp. 74
Snappy Cevichesp. 78
Chapter 6 Foods from the Mexican Marketplacep. 85
Getting Stuffed on Quesadillasp. 86
Paying attention to your ingredientsp. 86
Making your own flour tortillasp. 86
Quintessential quesadillasp. 88
Tortillas Transforming into Tacosp. 92
Warming the tortillas and building a tacop. 92
Making tasty tacosp. 94
Entertaining with Enchiladasp. 98
Rolling an enchiladap. 98
Amazing enchiladasp. 99
Snacking on Tortasp. 102
Part III Enjoying an Extended Tourp. 107
Chapter 7 Stuffed Treatsp. 109
Empanadas: Little Pies Full of Flavorp. 110
Tamales: Feast-Day Treatsp. 114
Wrapping a tamalep. 114
Steaming the tamalesp. 115
Tamales for every occasionp. 116
Chiles Rellenosp. 121
Chapter 8 Soulful Soupsp. 125
Setting Your Sights on Mexican Soupsp. 125
Putting all your soup in the right potp. 125
Discovering the art of the garnishp. 126
Freezing soupsp. 126
Creating your own stockp. 127
Soup is for tastingp. 128
So Many Sopas, So Little Timep. 128
The Caldo Connectionp. 138
Possibly the Best Posolep. 139
Chapter 9 Border Saladsp. 143
Preparing the Greensp. 144
Dressing the Greensp. 145
The Tostada: A Salad in Disguisep. 145
All-Star Side Saladsp. 148
Bean and Grain Saladsp. 154
Chapter 10 The Essential Sides: Rice, Beans, Tortillas, and Vegetablesp. 159
Getting the Rice Spiritp. 160
Beautiful, Beautiful Refried Beans!p. 163
Making Your Own Corn Tortillasp. 166
Reheating tortillasp. 168
Frying a corn tortilla (and turning it into a tortilla chip)p. 168
Spicing Things Up with Veggie Sidesp. 169
Chapter 11 Best Braises, Stews, and Molesp. 175
Stewing, the Techniquep. 175
The Traditional Stewsp. 177
The Innovationsp. 184
Chapter 12 Fish and Seafood Starsp. 191
Tasting the Fruit of the Seap. 191
Sampling squidp. 191
Showing off with shrimpp. 193
South of the Border Fish Dishesp. 194
Shopping for fresh fishp. 194
Cooking fish to perfectionp. 195
Chapter 13 Four Chickens and a Turkeyp. 199
Chicken + Chiles = Incredible Flavorp. 199
Selecting chickenp. 199
Trimming out the bonep. 200
It's all about the marinadep. 200
Spicy, citrusy chickenp. 201
Turkey, the Native Mexican Birdp. 207
Chapter 14 Main Course Meatsp. 209
Experiencing the Richness of Porkp. 210
Beefing Up Your Mealsp. 215
On the Lambp. 218
Chapter 15 Sweets for Spice Loversp. 221
Old-Fashioned Endingsp. 221
New Broder Sweetsp. 228
Part IV Menus for Every Occasionp. 235
Chapter 16 Fiestas and Theme Partiesp. 237
The Winter Holiday Tamale Partyp. 237
The setupp. 239
The game planp. 240
The Day of the Dead Celebrationp. 241
The setupp. 245
The game planp. 245
A Mexican Beach Barbecuep. 247
The setupp. 249
The game planp. 250
A Cinco de Mayo Taco Partyp. 251
Five easy fillingsp. 252
The setupp. 252
The game planp. 252
Chapter 17 Breakfast Specialsp. 255
Eggs Worth Waking Up Forp. 255
Sweet Beginningsp. 260
A Quick Breakfast Sandwichp. 264
Part V The Part of Tensp. 265
Chapter 18 Ten Ways to Set the Scenep. 267
Playing Latin Musicp. 267
Adding Flowers and Plantsp. 268
Setting the Tablep. 268
Serving Drinksp. 268
Serving Tequila in Lime Halvesp. 269
Dimming the Lightsp. 269
Placing Chips and Salsa in Strategic Locationsp. 269
Polishing up a Room with Decorative Accentsp. 270
Giving Guests a Dessert to Gop. 270
Chapter 19 Ten Delicious Treats to Make with Tortillas and Chipsp. 271
Crisped Tortilla Crackersp. 271
Tortilla Bunuelosp. 272
The Instant Fish Wrapperp. 272
Chips and Their Crunchp. 272
Matzoh Brei Mexicanap. 273
Finger Food Wrapsp. 273
Instant Soup Fixinsp. 273
Tortilla Ice Cream Sundaesp. 273
Healthful Tortilla Stockp. 274
Chex Mexp. 274
Chapter 20 Ten Spanish Phrases for Travelersp. 275
Por favorp. 275
Muchas graciasp. 275
Lo quiero mas o menos picantep. 276
La cuenta, por favorp. 276
Donde esta el bano?p. 276
Quiero ordenar una comida tipica de la region, no la comida de los gringosp. 276
Sin hielop. 276
Quiero agua purificadap. 277
Que platillo sugieres?p. 277
Cuanto cuesta?p. 277
Chapter 21 Ten Web Sites to Check Outp. 279
Chefnetp. 280
FoodTVp. 280
Epicuriousp. 280
Slow Foodp. 280
Border Grillp. 281
Digitalchefp. 281
Melissasp. 281
Chile Today -- Hot Tamalep. 281
Cibolo Junctionp. 282
CNN Food Centralp. 282
Part VI Appendixesp. 283
Appendix A Common Substitutions and Equivalentsp. 285
Appendix B Glossary of Spanish Termsp. 289
Indexp. 299
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