(August 7, 2023)
UTSA Libraries has teamed up with Restaurant Mixtli to showcase recipes from the UTSA Mexican Cookbook Collection, the nation’s most prominent and extensive collection of Mexican cookbooks. “Recetas: 1879-Present Day: A celebration of women in Mexican gastronomy,” a new menu of appetizers, entrees, desserts and libations, will debut at Mixtli on August 8 through October 31, 2023.
Chefs from Mixtli spent three months combing through over 50 cookbooks from the collection, some meticulously written in long-hand and dating as far back as 1808, to create an eight-course meal that pays homage to the significant contributions of women cooks and chefs. The menu focuses on different women chefs from Mexico, including Josefina Velásquez de León, who published more than 100 cookbooks, and Vicenta Torres de Rubio, Mexico’s first female cookbook author.
“Women are the head of the household in Mexico, and for many years they have not gotten their dues for creating some of the most quintessential recipes in Mexico as we know them now,” said Chef Rico Torres, Restaurant Mixtli co-owner and executive chef. “Since the beginning, Mixtli has focused on Mexican history to help us understand the food we were creating. Women chefs have always been a staple in our kitchen. So, we’re super-excited about this new menu as it shines a light on what motivates us to love and do what we do.”
The wine pairings for each course will include Mexican wines from prominent female producers and winemakers. Sommelier Hailey Pruitt said, “We are excited to debut and give a little more exposure to these woman-owned productions.”
The restaurant’s Bar Director, Lauren Beckman, will also have newly concocted drinks influenced by at-home recipes that include a variety of herbs, spices, barks and chemicals noted in one of the drink recipe books from the Mexican Cookbook Collection.
“Many stories live within the collection and Mixtli’s menu celebrates and honors the stories of women throughout history who continue to inspire chefs today,” said Amy Rushing, assistant vice provost for Special Collections. “As stewards of this culturally significant collection, we are excited to see these recipes come to life through Mixtli’s new menu.”
The “Recetas: 1879-Present Day” menu is an extension of the UTSA Libraries’ annual Ven a Comer festivities taking place this year from mid-September to mid-October in observance of Hispanic Heritage Month. On September 19, UTSA Libraries will host UTSA Night at Mixtli, an evening of good food and good books. Special Collections staff will have a display of some of the oldest cookbooks onsite for diners to examine. Part of the proceeds from the night will benefit the UTSA Mexican Cookbook Collection.
“These women that we’re focusing on are pioneers for Mexican gastronomy,” said Mixtli Chef de Cuisine Alexana Cabrera. They helped put Mexican food on a pedestal, and it's an honor to represent them.”
Don’t miss this unique dining experience as chefs bring these historical recipes to life. Tickets are going fast, so make your reservations today.
The Mexican Cookbook Collection is open and available to the public. To make an appointment, email firstname.lastname@example.org.