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November 23, 2015


Celia Sin-Tien Cheng

“Tacopedia” is an essential reference guide for any taco lover (I like to refer to it as the taco bible). A bestseller in Mexico, it’s now translated into English, so you can follow Deborah Holtz and Juan Carlos Mena as they trace the history of tacos, from the domestication of maize to the discovery of nixtamal, which led to the inception of corn tortillas. From there, “Tacopedia” delves into the different types of taco fillings, detailing the region of origin, ingredients, cooking method, recipes and lists of the best taco stands or restaurants in Mexico that make each type. The key components of any taco are the tortilla, the filling and the salsa, so throughout the book there are recipes for many kinds of fillings, and a whole section devoted to salsa. It’s a comprehensive encyclopedia on everything you ever wanted to know about tacos, but most importantly, it is organized and presented in a fun and inspiring way, not as a dull or dry reference book. I had to stop myself from drooling from chapter to chapter. I’ve been to three taco outlets in Mexico City listed in the book, but now I have so many more to look forward to. Talk about whetting one’s appetite: this book will do just that.