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Have you checked out Diana Kennedy's 2010 cookbook Oaxaca al Gusto: An Infinite Gastronomy? Because if you have, and you really should, you'll notice it feels a little more academic than most cookbooks: It was commissioned by a governor of Oaxaca in order to catalog the state's regional cuisine. Oaxaca al Gusto contains some 300 recipes, most adapted for home cooks, for traditional Oaxacan dishes. There's little more satisfying when grinding seeds for a mole verde or cabeza de res -- that's barbecued beef head to you -- then knowing that what you're reading from is equal parts historic document and kitchen guide.
Kennedy, an author and chef who is often referred to as the "Julia Child of Mexican cooking," will be signing copies of her latest cookbook on Sunday, June 10, at 3:30 p.m. at LACMA, in conjunction with the exhibition Children of the Plumed Serpent: The Legacy of Quetzalcoatl in Ancient Mexico. Kennedy has studied Mexican cuisine for more then 50 years, influenced countless chefs, and paved the way for people like Rick Bayless, Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken. Her works include The Essential Cuisines of Mexico, The Art of Mexican Cooking, My Mexico and From My Mexican Kitchen.
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