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Publishers WeeklyStarred Review.
In her latest, chef and author Schneider (Baja! Cooking on the Edge) presents a zesty take on tacos, drinks, and appetizers sure to inspire fans of Mexican flavors. Following a brief overview of Mexican cuisine and culture, Schneider dives into a bevy of cocktails, including tequila infused with Serrano chiles, mango and lime; classic limonadas and micheladas; and 10 party-starting margaritas. Cooks can choose among five suggested menus scaled for small or large crowds, each an impressive but easy-to-achieve affair with unexpected dimensions. Simple but impressive appetizers like Toritos-jalapeno peppers stuffed with shrimp and cheese-and Lobster, Chayote and Mango Tostadas are sure to please; the Mexican Hot Dog, meanwhile, is an instant guilty-pleasure classic: wrapped in bacon, fried, and topped with lime mayonnaise, fresh pico de gallo and chipotle-spiked ketchup. Schneider's tacos are equally refreshing: one of her three shrimp tacos includes a sweet and spicy barbecue sauce; traditional shredded beef takes on deep, complex flavors with a braise of chiles and Coca-Cola; and the time-intensive Chipotle Duck Taco with Duck Chicharron, Pineapple Cucumber Salsa and Spicy Crema, yields attention-getting results. Though some dishes may intimidate, Schneider's enthusiastic and approachable text keeps frustration to a minimum. This is a collection that novice cooks can grow with, and is sure to be dog-eared in no time.
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