Arts, Culture & Media

Armchair Travel: Take a Trip to Mexico with Author and Chef Pati Jinich


Tear This Heart Out book cover

Chef Pati Jinich is the author of "Pati's Mexican Table." Born and raised in Mexico City, she left a career at a DC think tank to pursue her foodie passion, and she travels extensively in Mexico for her writing and her PBS show (also called Pati's Mexican Table). We asked her for her recommendations.

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We're doing an ongoing armchair travel series this summer asking writers, journalists, and others for book recommendations that can take our listeners on a trip without ever leaving their armchair.

We asked her for her recommendations, and she shared three of her most cherished books. Listen to hear her talk about food, Mexico, and love.

Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel, is a magical realist novel, whose story is told in the form of monthly recipe installments. Food, family, and fantasy combine in a wonderful, charming tale.

The Heart of Jade by Salvador de Madariaga, chronicles two families, one Aztec and one Spanish, during the initial arrival of the conquistadors in Mexico. Drawing symbolic links between the fortunes and links between the two clans, the novel grapples with questions of identity, ownership, and love in a mestizo nation.

Tear This Heart Out by Angeles Mastretta, is the story of a young teenage girl who rebels against her traditional family's wish that she not marry until her mother dies. Instead, she runs off with a politically ambitious general more than twice her age, and charts a tumultuous course to womanhood as her marriage devolves.