Mexican Food Essay

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English 111_23F Reading Response #1 Instructor: J. Brown Word Count: 802 In his essay, “The Unexpected Lessons of Mexican Food”, Mexican/American writer, Armando Montano (1989-2012) reflects more on his Hispanic heritage and how he stays connected to it by means of food and cooking. He starts out by sharing a memory of when he was just a small boy and his father was cooking pinto beans in the family’s kitchen. He does an incredible job at bringing the reader right into their kitchen where you can smell the beans cooking in oil and cumin as he draws you into the purpose of his writing; his Hispanic heritage. Armando gives vivid detail of a specific trip he and his father took to the Mexican/America border in Texas, his father’s home town; Eagle Pass. The racism still seemed to be pretty thick as they were denied a hotel room at a Best Western by the hotel attendant that he described as a “Anglo man” and because of this they had to spend the night in a rundown motel, sleeping on a “ratty mattress supported by cinder blocks”. He then goes into describing the town itself, the people his father knows, the smell of authentic Mexican food being prepared, how his father seemed to be somewhat absent while engaging in small talk with old friends and the popular Mexican dish of melt in your mouth beef made of “different beef heads”. All of these things drew him to his Hispanic roots that he carried with him throughout his short life and even into college studies. He talks of the time he spent abroad in Argentina and the lack of authentic Mexican cuisine available which prompted him to spend an entire day gathering ingredients to prepare his own for himself and friends. After preparing the Guillermo, also referred to as the “Mexican peasant dish” which is made up of beans, egg, tortillas, tomato, jalapenos, peppers and spices, only once, his friends were hooked

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