Sizzling fajitas are probably the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Tex-Mex's contribution to the backyard barbecue. But mesquite-kissed T-bones with grilled corn on the cob slathered in ancho chile butter is Tex-Mex too--and so are grilled jumbo Gulf shrimp with pineapple kebabs and red snapper fish tacos. In The Tex-Mex Grill and Backyard Barbacoa Cookbook renowned Texas food writer and James Beard Award winner Robb Walsh showcases the full spectrum of outdoor cooking in Texas and Northern Mexico in his unique style, with photos and 85 easy-to-follow recipes.
The smoky and spicy flavors of the Tex-Mex grill evolved from the culture of the Latino cattlemen. Walsh traces the history of grilling in the border region and provides a handbook of techniques, step by step photos, and interviews with legendary Tex-Mex chefs. Here are all their recipes and more for grilled meats and seafood adapted for the backyard barbecue, along with the frijoles and side dishes, picante salsas, and festive tequila cocktails that fill out the fiesta.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2010-05-10
- Reviewer: Staff
Chili-heads and grill jockeys are likely already familiar with Texas food writer and James Beard Award-winner Walsh, author of volumes (like Legends of Texas Barbecue) that have become textbooks of outdoor cooking. His latest, a kind of sequel to 2004's Tex-Mex Cookbook, is no exception. As in previous volumes, Walsh begins each chapter with a compulsively readable narrative overview of a particular style, region or dish (margaritas, tailgating, taco trucks, fajitas, etc.), followed by a number of recipes illustrating the possibilities of each. Walsh keeps the formula fresh by rolling up his sleeves and digging deep for the secrets of fajita steak (including trips to the butcher and the meat fabricator), the origins of the taco truck phenomenon, and the delicacy that is Texas-style barbacoa--at its purest, barbecued cattle head--with infectious curiosity and enthusiasm. Walsh's prose is balanced with smoky, classic Tex-Mex recipes begging for a turn: the classic bacon-wrapped Sonoran hot dog; the Tortaburger, a hybrid of the traditional Mexican sandwich that serves a beef patty on Telera bread with fried eggs and refried beans on top; and the must-try Beef Short Ribs in Ancho-Molasses Sauce. Those looking for variety will find it in Ancho-Root Beer Hot Wings and Grapefruit Chicken Fajitas, Chile Grilled Pineapple, and condiments like Grilled Tomato Hot Sauce and Texas Red Grapefruit Salsa. (May)
A celebration of the best that the Tex-Mex tradition offers, The Tex-Mex Grill and Backyard Barbacoa Cookbook, illustrated with 75 archival and new photographs, takes you on a tour of famous Tex-Mex restaurants, taco trucks, cook-offs and tailgating extravaganzas, and has all the recipes you'll need to make these spicy treasures in your own backyard. No Tex-Mex fiesta could start without a Margarita, and you'd be hard-pressed to find a more welcoming summer cocktail than this super-seasonal, rosy-pink Watermelon version. If you can't find "watermelon liquor," no problema—just add little more tequila, can't hurt!
Thanks to gramercy tavern manager Nick Mautone for the frozen watermelon ice cube idea.
1/2 small watermelon
8 ounces Simple Syrup (page 38)
4 ounces freshly squeezed lemon juice
4 ounces freshly squeezed lime juice
12 ounces gold tequila
8 ounces watermelon liqueur
12 mint leaves
Cut the watermelon into 1-inch cubes, removing the seeds as you go. Place the cubes in a colander set inside a bowl. Stir the cubes gently to extract juice without breaking up the cubes. You should have at least 8 ounces of juice. Put the watermelon cubes on a tray and freeze until solid—about an hour.
Mix the syrup, lemon juice, and lime juice with the watermelon juice. To serve, divide the frozen cubes among 4 glasses. Add the tequila, then the liqueur, and then the juice mixture and stir. Garnish with the mint leaves.
Recipe from The Tex-Mex Grill and Backyard Barbacoa Cookbook; Broadway Books; Trade Paperback Original $18.99