College of Liberal Arts

Speaker Series Examines Authentic Mexican Food

Thursday Feb 18, 2010 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM | Long Center for the Performing Arts, AT&T Education Room

  The Mexican Center of the Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies (LLILAS) presents a talk titled “Transplanted Cuisines: Migrants in the Making of Mexican Cuisine,” a part of its speaker series on the history of Mexican food.

In this stimulating presentation, Rachel Laudan shows how the usual story that authentic Mexican cuisine is just a fusion of Spanish and indigenous traditions is much too simple, and reveals how the French, Germans, Italians, Africans, English, Chinese, Japanese, Americans, and Lebanese, among others, have played key roles in its development.
Prize-winning historian Rachel Laudan straddles the culinary and academic worlds, having been Scholar in Residence for the International Association of Culinary Professionals and winner of the Sophie Coe Prize of the Oxford Symposium of Food and Cookery. She now divides her time between the colonial city of Guanajuato and Mexico City. Her thesis that Mexican cuisine is shaped by the cuisine of medieval Islam has been much discussed by leaders of the Mexican culinary community, including chefs, food photographers, historians, anthropologists, and restaurateurs. More information on Rachel Laudan can be found on her blog.

LLILAS has organized the speaker series Foodways of Mexico: Past, Present, and Future. Running through November 2010, it explores lesser known aspects of Mexico’s rich culinary history, from pre-Columbian times to the present day. The series was organized by Claudia Alarcón, an Austin-based food writer who is a native of Mexico City and has written extensively on foodways topics for a variety of publications, including the Austin Chronicle.
Additional talks in the Foodways of Mexico: Past, Present, and Future series will take place throughout the year. Check the LLILAS Mexico 2010 Web site for updates.

For more information, contact the Mexican Center at 512.232.2423 or Sponsored by the Mexican Center of LLILAS, University of Texas at Austin. 

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