This reading tells the story of Pinedo and her cookbook, El Cocinero Espanol, which was published in 1898. The cookbook is California’s first cookbook made in the Spanish language. The author is arguing that the cookbook is a greatly significant tool that can be used to reveal the cultural context and stories of the time. Pinedo dedicated El Cocinero Espanol to her nieces so that they would not lose this important aspect of their culture after marrying “Yankee” men. This cookbook shows how Pinedo grapples with identity and culture, as she, at times, emphasizes her Spanish heritage over her Mexican heritage to increase her social standing, while also leaving Yankee recipes out of her book and drawing from different international cuisines. A quote from the text which sums up the story of this cookbook is, “The Spanish Cook goes significantly beyond being just a cookbook. It is a sociological document that serves as a testimony of a lost culture.” It took until the 1930s for major Mexican cookbooks to be written by Hispanic women, showing how significant Pinedo’s contribution was at the time. The recipes in her cookbook are varied, from savory marinades, to fruit syrups, to tamales. However, the lasting implications of El Concinero Espanol go far beyond that of just recipes.

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