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HPPR Arts, Culture & History

Lone Star Chef Rediscovers Ancient Cuisine of Texas

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Lynn Lane
/
Texas Observer

When folks talk about Texas cuisine, they often think of Tex-Mex or barbecue or chicken fried steak. But Lone Star chef Adán Medrano wants to make sure we don’t forget Texas’s first cuisine.

Medrano is a lover of what he calls Texas Mexican food. As The Texas Observer reports, Texas Mexican is the cuisine of the Mexican-American community of Texas, whose ancestors are the Native Americans who first lived here 12,000 years ago.

These are the dishes of the Tejas, Karankawa, Coahuiltecan and other indigenous communities. As a student at the Culinary Institute of America, Medrano began to ask himself how the food of his ancient ancestors had been forgotten.

So he began to investigate, calling forth the ancient past with dishes of roots and vegetables, stewed pinto beans, and deer, quail, duck and turkey meat, as well as seafood.

And the results? They were delicious.