Customer Reviews for

Pati's Mexican Table: The Secrets of Real Mexican Home Cooking

Average Rating 4.5
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  • Posted March 2, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Pati Jinich, a native of Mexico City, proves a most engaging

    <p>Pati Jinich, a native of Mexico City, proves a most engaging guide to homestyle Mexican dishes from street foods to colonial gems, Middle Eastern influences to comfort foods from across Mexico: you’ll find references to Guadalajara, Oaxaca, Veracruz, Michoacán, the Yucatan Peninsula and Mexico City. Her PBS show Pati’s Mexican Table features two seasons of episodes that revolve around a certain ingredient, holiday, or theme.</p>
    <p>I was lucky to receive a review copy several weeks ago courtesy of Pati’s publicist, and in that time I’ve tried several recipes from the various sections, including two of the salads (red leaf, avocado, and grapefruit salad with olive-mint vinaigrette and the spinach goat cheese salad with caramelized pecans and jamaica vinaigrette), a soup (Mexican alphabet soup), several of the egg dishes (huevos rabo de mestiza, Mexican frittata with poblanos, potatoes, and feta), and two of the desserts (triple orange Mexican wedding cookies, Alisa’s marbled pound cake). I also made the tamarind, apricot and chipotle sauce for use with another dish.</p>
    <p>Pati’s easygoing manner and clear explanations translate well to the written page; many of the recipes in “Pati’s Mexican Table” come complete with a “Mexican Cook’s Trick” sidebar with the types of tips that add an extra layer of authenticity: you’ll find tips on enhancing the flavor of cucumbers by rubbing them with the cut ends, that your masa should have the consistency of Play-Doh, tips on working with tortillas before adding sauce, and using rice flour in tortes. These little tidbits are the types of things that you don’t often find in cookbooks, and it’s a nice touch that makes you feel like you’re being let in on a family secret.</p>
    <p>The recipes are clearly laid out and easy to follow. I loved the unique salad dressings like the olive-mint vinaigrette and the hibiscus flower vinaigrette; these will become a regular staple in my kitchen. I found that for two of the dishes I tried, the Mexican Alphabet Soup and the triple orange Mexican wedding cookies, that I made a few small tweaks to the recipes as written. The Mexican Alphabet soup only called for ¼ cup chopped onion, 1 clove garlic and 1 tsp salt for 8 cups of broth and a 28-oz can of crushed tomatoes; I added more onion and garlic and sautéed them first before pureeing them. If you’re serving this to adults and not kids, I’d also recommend adding a reconstituted ancho chile to the onion, garlic and tomatoes before pureeing. The triple orange Mexican wedding cookies differ from the more “traditional” Mexican wedding cookie featured in episode 201, which called for shortening (or you can use lard) and ground pecans. The triple-orange Mexican wedding cookies in the cookbook have neither shortening nor ground pecans, which gave them more of a cakey texture than <i>polvorones</i>. I would also recommend adding ½ teaspoon of orange extract to bump up the orange essence. You may also want to try using half shortening and half butter (the recipe is written for 2 sticks butter).</p>
    <p>There’s a good sampling of recipes taken from the show’s two seasons; I did a quick scan on the show’s website, and it would appear that at least one recipe from each show made it into the cookbook. You’ll find show favorites like <b>Chicken with Tamarind, Apricots and Chipotle Sauce</b>, <b>Chicken À La Trash</b>, <b>Mexican Meatballs with Mint and Chipotle</b>, and <b>Steak Tacos with Jamaica-Jalapeño Sauce</b>, along with vegetarian-friendly recipes, kid-friendly recipes, and even a few gluten-free recipes to boot. There are also some international dishes like watermelon and tomatillo salad with feta cheese, tomato and mozzarella salad with pickled ancho chile vinaigrette, and crab cakes with jalapeño aioli that are given a fun Mexican-inspired twist. Gorgeous photography and a user-friendly bilingual index (Spanish recipe titles are printed in italics) round out Pati’s Mexican Table.</p>
    <p>Verdict: Fans of Pati’s TV show and those looking for an easy, tasty introduction to homestyle Mexican cooking will be sure to enjoy Pati’s Mexican Table (let’s hope there are many more seasons and a second cookbook to boot!). ¡Provecho!</p>
    <p>Review copy courtesy of Pati’s publicist – ¡muchas gracias!</p>

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2013

    que puedo decir es la major forma de cocinar con pati todo es fa

    que puedo decir es la major forma de cocinar con pati todo es facil como 1 2 3 seguir sus recetas es una maravilla todo es muy facil teniendo una persona maravillosa que explica y es la major manera de preparer platillos divinos gracias PATI

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2013

    A fun new cookbook with a different spin on Mexican food

    I saw Pati on The Chew making Aztec Chicken Casserole which quirked my interest in her book. My sister, who also loves to cook, came from out of state to visit. I made this dish, refrigerated it over night and it was as good as predicated. Both our husbands thought it yummy too. The instructions were a bit hard to understand so I ended up re-watching the recorded episode. We normally eat Tex Mex so this was a pleasant change. If you are expecting Tex Mex recipes you will be disappointed. The book has a lot of photos of the dishes and also has descriptions of some of the ingredients along with hints of how to buy and prepare them. I plan on trying a couple more recipes soon.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 5, 2013

    Decide for yourself

    It is smaller than I had hoped and so had fewer recipes. She is very clear on her instructions and the recipes are good and simple to make.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 25, 2013

    Great Book!

    Love the recipes and pictures in this book. This will be a keeper for sure!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2013

    Highly recommend!

    Thank you Pati for bringing authentic Mexican food back into the kitchen.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2013

    Recommend

    Good basic Mexican dishes and good family stories.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 17, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

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