IntroductionWhat’s So Cosmic About a Burrito?
Two hundred and thirteen miles up in space, the Earth below cerulean blue, the universe around them infinite and awesome, José Hernández and Danny Olivas wanted Mexican food.
The two had come prepared. They were astronauts on STS-128, a NASA mission that flew the Discovery
space shuttle to rendezvous with the International Space Station on August 30, 2009. Discovery
’s seven-member crew spent ten days at the research station, primarily to resupply the people already up there and to rotate members. Olivas—raised in El Paso,...
Chapter OneYou Mean Mexico Gave the World More Than Just Tacos?
Before we begin our study of Mexican food in the United States, it’s wise to start at the source: Mexico. Trying to figure out who created what dish or harvested what crop first is a silly exercise, but there is an acknowledged Bethlehem, where foreigners first became entranced by the food and then sought to sing its glories ever after: Mexico City.
The mother in this Nativity scene, of course, is the Virgin of Guadalupe, whom the Catholic Church says appeared to the peon Juan Diego in 1531 as a brown-skinned Mother of Christ dressed in the simple...