Memoir •  Southwest and Cooking

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Coyota in the Kitchen: A Memoir of New and Old Mexico

Anita Rodríguez

Winner of the 2017 New Mexico-Arizona Book Award for Best New Mexico Book
Winner of the 2017 New Mexico-Arizona Book Award for Multi-Cultural Subject
Winner of the 2016 Southwest Book Award from the Border Regional Library Association

This book of stories and recipes introduces two eccentric families that would never have eaten together, let alone exchanged recipes, but for the improbable marriage of the author’s parents: a nuevomexicano from Taos and a painter who came from Texas to New Mexico to study art. Recalling the good and the terrible cooks in her family, Anita Rodríguez also shares the complications of navigating a safe path among contradictory cultural perspectives. She takes us from the mountain villages of New Mexico in the 1940s to sipping mint juleps on the porch of a mansion in the South, and also on a prolonged pilgrimage to Mexico and back again to New Mexico. Accompanied by Rodríguez’s vibrant paintings—including scenes of people eating on fiesta nights and plastering an adobe church— Coyota in the Kitchen shows how food reflects the complicated family histories that shape our lives.


Anita Rodríguez is an award-winning painter who is also widely known as an enjarradora, or plasterer and finisher of adobe buildings. She lives in Taos, New Mexico.


“Rodríguez writes with verve, confidence, and endless humor.”


New Mexico Magazine

“The blending of cultures is everywhere apparent in the hybrid volume. . . . Sharply observed, often hilarious.”



“This multi-artist is a self-declared ‘packrat,’ not only of stories but also of images, and, I add, recipes. She has picked through her stash and combined the findings into one long, interesting and tasty story.”


Story Circle Book Reviews

5.5 x 8.5 in. 216 pages 9 color plates, 7 drawings