History of Mexican food in the US

Last week, I posted a Smithsonian interview with a Mexican food expert on the history of tacos. Here’s a companion article by Gustavo Arellano that is interesting, packed with nuggets of information, but also at times overwritten and needlessly political.

That you have a nation (and increasingly a planet—you can find Mexican restaurants from Ulan Bator to Sydney to Prague) lusting after tequila, guacamole, and tres leches cake isn’t an exercise in culinary neocolonialism but something closer to the opposite. By allowing itself to be endlessly adaptable to local tastes, Mexican food has become a primary vehicle for exporting the culture of a long-ridiculed country to the far corners of the globe. Forget Mexico’s imaginary Reconquista of the American Southwest; the real conquest of North America is a peaceful and consensual affair, taking place one tortilla at a time.

History of Mexican food in the US

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