Latino Food Culture

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Latino cuisine has always been a part of American foodways, but the recent growth of a diverse Latino population in the form of documented and undocumented immigrants, refugees, and exiles has given rise to a pan-Latino food phenomenon. These various food cultures in the United States are expertly overviewed here together in depth for the first time. Many Mexican American, Cuban American, Puerto Ricans, Dominican American, and Central and South American communities in the United States are considered transnational because they actively participate in the economy, politics, and culture of both the United States and their countries of origin. The pan-Latino food culture that is emerging in the United States is also a transnational phenomenon that constantly nurtures and is nurtured by national and regional cuisines. They all combine in kaleidoscopic ways their shared gastronomic wealth of Spanish and Amerindian cuisines with different African, European and Asian culinary traditions. This book discusses the ongoing development of Latino food culture, giving special attention to how Latinos are adapting and transforming Latin American and international elements to create one of the most vibrant cuisines today.

This is essential reading for crucial cultural insight into Latinos from all backgrounds. Readers will learn about the diverse elements of an evolving pan-Latino food culture-the history of the various groups and their foodstuffs, cooking, meals and eating habits, special occasions, and diet and health. Representative recipes and photos are interspersed in the essays. A chronology, glossary, resource guide, and bibliography make this a one-stop resource for every library.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Janer…has produced an excellent introduction to Latino culinary practices. This monograph is one of a five volume series on food cultures in America. The text follows the uniform outline for the other volumes, which includes a timeline of important culinary events, an historic overview, ingredients, meal preparation and other socio/cultural aspects of food. Janer excels at highlighting how Latinos, while not a homogenous group, share a rich and varied culinary tradition. …The book is a great resource for readers interested in Latino cooking and for American born Latino/as wanting to reconnect with their culinary heritage. This is an excellent addition to all media centers, public and academic libraries."


REFORMA Newsletter

"From national holidays and special occassion celebrations to regional recipes which have made it to the U.S., Latino Food Culture is packed with cultural, social and culinary insights and connections and is especially recommended for any college-level library strong in Latin culture and food."


The Bookwatch/Midwest Book Review

"Readers learn in Latin Food Culture that although various Latin American and Latino cuisines have always been a part of the American experience, they are even more so now because of the recent growth of the Latino population. Each volume in this series contains a foreword, an introduction, a chronology, line drawings and photos, recipes, a glossary, a resource guide, a selected bibliography, and an index."


MultiCultural Review

"The text is easy to read and very enjoyable in its content; the glossary is extremely helpful for new arrivals to this type of cuisine. The chapter has a bibliography to obtain more information on the subject matter. It is well indexed. The book has appropriate binding, the paper is average; and font size is sufficient. This book should be in all food-oriented libraries. It will be particularly useful for students studying in food culture since the Latino population is growing in this country and consequently will be important in their future."



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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313340277
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/30/2008
  • Series: Food Cultures in America Series
  • Pages: 200
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

ZILKIA JANER teaches Latin American and Latino literature and Culture at Hofstra University. She is the author of Puerto Rican Nation-Building Literature: Impossible Romance (2005) and has published a number of articles on Latin American and South Asian culinary cultures.

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Table of Contents

Series Foreword   Ken Albala     ix
Acknowledgments     xi
Introduction     xiii
Chronology     xvii
Historical Overview     1
Major Foods and Ingredients     25
Cooking     49
Meals     71
Eating Out     101
Special Occasions     119
Diet and Health     141
Glossary     147
Resource Guide     157
Bibliography     161
Index     165
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