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CUISINE OF THE WATER GODS Hardcover – December 1, 1994

4.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Mystical presences seem to hover around Quintana's latest contribution to our knowledge of south-of-the-border cuisine. She employs an unusual device to summarize the traditions and indigenous edibles of Mexico's 16 coastal states. A fictional character, in some instances contemporary, in others historical, introduces the food lures of each state. She concentrates solely on seafood and vegetable cookery, both featuring out-of-the-ordinary ingredients. Among her more than 190 recipes, many of which include serving suggestions and variations, are pumpkin in brown sugar syrup, mahimahi with dates and mangoes, coconut candies, yuca fritters, and avocado tarts with smoked trout and truffle vinaigrette. Barbara Jacobs


Mexican seafood and vegetable cookery is profiled in a unique focus on Mexico's coastal cuisine, which goes far beyond most Mexican cookbooks. From Tuna Taquitos with Guacamole to an Oaxacan Lobster in Tamarind Sauce, this is packed with dishes you won't find anywhere else. -- Midwest Book Review

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster (December 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 067174898X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671748982
  • Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 1.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #615,061 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By J. Marquez on December 31, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've enjoyed meals at Quintana's Izote and value the culinary contributions she made. I also purchased Taste of Mexico when was a bit disappointed with the shallow recipe selection (more of an introduction to Mexican cuisine).

Cuisine of the Water Gods is a much better book for cooking beyond what is mainstream in Mexico, predictably I am most compelled by the recipes from Central & Southern Mexico... although the Northern states do offer some interesting Ceviche & Seafood Cocktail recipes. I have found maybe 50 or so recipes that will go into my repertoire... so that is a pretty good yield in my experience.

Overall... I would say the best introduction to Mexican Cuisine is Bayless' Authentic Mexican... then at the next phase of mastery, Cusine of the Water Gods & some of Diane Kennedy's books... then when you want to get deeper into the cuisine... you purchase State specific books like Zarala's Oaxaca & Veracruz books... or ingredient specific (typically only available as imports).
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By R. Stracke on August 16, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I just purchased Quintana's book, so I can't speak for how the recipes turn out, but there are a few points worth noting for perspective buyers. For the sake of context, I'm a relative novice in terms of Mexican cooking. I began working with through Bayless' Mexican Kitchen earlier this year. I also own Kennedy's most recent book. I've had success with both.

This is a different beast. It's fascinating for me to learn about the regional variations and more specifically, the indigenous preparations. The structure is unique, but very approachable. I can honestly say that even after an hour of skimming, I have a better sense of the regional differences.

That being said, the recipes themselves look a bit over my head. Knowledge of many preparations are assumed. Many of the ingredients appear relatively obscure (although I have seen a good deal of them in Chicago's Mexican markets). There are some substitution suggestions, but they're not always included.

The biggest problem appears to be the size of the portions. Most entrees are designed for 8-16 people. A tamale recipe provides 60 tamales. I'm sure that the recipes can be cut down, but there's no information about whether you can simply cut every ingredient in half/quarter and maintain the proper flavor/texture. I'll see how that goes sometime down the road.

I'm still rating the book highly because the description of the recipes, regional breakdown and focus on indigenous foods fascinates me. I'll likely read the text portions from cover to cover, but this is an addition to your Mexican cookbook library- not a foundation builder. As the other review notes, start with Bayless or Kennedy. As you grow comfortable, add this for some fresh ideas.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A very creative layout of the seafood of each of the costal states plus Mexico city. There is not one picture of the finished dish so take it into consideration, since I am allways learning new stuff; I need visual references. You have to own this book if you like Mexican food or seafood in general, it will open your eyes since Mexico has its own twist on everything.

Un formato muy creativo de la cocina del mar de cada estado con litroal ademas del distrito federal. No tiene fotos de platillos terminados. Como siempre busco aprender cosas nuevas, necesito referencias visuales. Tienes que tener este libro si te gusta la cocina Mexicana o la cocina del mar en general; te abrira los ojos ya que Mexico le pone su toque a todo.
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