100 books like El Charro Cafe

By Carlotta Flores,

Here are 100 books that El Charro Cafe fans have personally recommended if you like El Charro Cafe. Shepherd is a community of 9,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of AMA: A Modern Tex-Mex Kitchen

Jackie Alpers Author Of Taste of Tucson: Sonoran-Style Recipes Inspired by the Rich Culture of Southern Arizona

From my list on southwestern regional home cooking.

Who am I?

Jackie Alpers is an award-winning professional food photographer and author. She is a longtime contributing recipe developer & photographer for The Food Network, Refinery29, TheKitchn, TodayFood, Real Simple, National Geographic, and Edible Baja Arizona Magazine among others. She has been featured in articles for Reader’s Digest, CNN, Good Morning America, The New York Times & NPR. She writes, cooks, and styles recipes from her sun-lit studio in Tucson, Arizona.

Jackie's book list on southwestern regional home cooking

Jackie Alpers Why did Jackie love this book?

Josef Centeno honors the food he grew up with in San Antonio. The book is named for his great-grandmother, “Ama´” and the influence of both his family, and his life as the chef of Los Angeles’s Bar Ama permeate the book. “Reimagined” is the word Josef uses to describe his recipes, and I think it’s a perfect descriptor for his particular vision.

Chef Centeno’s taste leans towards acidic, with lots of citrus and vinegars. Words like pickled and vinaigrette appear often in recipe titles and there is no shortage of chiles and salsas. I learn something every time I make a new recipe from this book, which is something I aspire to have my own cookbooks to do for others.

By Josef Centeno, Betty Hallock, Ren Fuller

Why should I read it?

1 author picked AMA as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An Eating the West Award Finalist 2020

Tex-Mex is a delicious, irreverent cuisine that combines the deep traditions of Texan and Mexican cooking. Think meaty stews, breakfast tacos, and tres leches cake. Home cooks will learn how to make them all-in addition to crunchy salads, slow-cooked meats, and fresh cocktails-in this collection of more than 100 recipes from San Antonio native and Los Angeles chef and restauranteur Josef Centeno. Organized into chapters by type of food-including breakfast, vegetables, main courses, desserts, and a super nacho party-this is down-home cooking and grilling at its most inspiring. Presented in a colorful package…


Book cover of The Homesick Texan Cookbook

Jackie Alpers Author Of Taste of Tucson: Sonoran-Style Recipes Inspired by the Rich Culture of Southern Arizona

From my list on southwestern regional home cooking.

Who am I?

Jackie Alpers is an award-winning professional food photographer and author. She is a longtime contributing recipe developer & photographer for The Food Network, Refinery29, TheKitchn, TodayFood, Real Simple, National Geographic, and Edible Baja Arizona Magazine among others. She has been featured in articles for Reader’s Digest, CNN, Good Morning America, The New York Times & NPR. She writes, cooks, and styles recipes from her sun-lit studio in Tucson, Arizona.

Jackie's book list on southwestern regional home cooking

Jackie Alpers Why did Jackie love this book?

Longing for the food from home yet finding her quest unobtainable to fulfil, Lisa Fain, a 7th generation Texan, took matters into her own hands and began exploring ways to recreate Tex-Mex dishes in her NYC apartment. From this process a cookbook was born. The Homesick Texan is for every armchair traveler who wants to recreate a little bit of Texas, not matter where they may be at the moment.

By Lisa Fain,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Homesick Texan Cookbook as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When Lisa Fain, a seventh-generation Texan, moved to New York City, she missed the big sky, the bluebonnets in spring, Friday night football, and her family's farm. But most of all, she missed the foods she'd grown up with.

After a fruitless search for tastes of Texas in New York City, Fain took matters into her own hands. She headed into the kitchen to cook for her friends the Tex-Mex, the chili, and the country comfort dishes that reminded her of home. From cheese enchiladas drowning in chili gravy to chicken-fried steak served with cream gravy on the side, from…


Book cover of The Border Cookbook: Authentic Home Cooking of the American Southwest and Northern Mexico

Jackie Alpers Author Of Taste of Tucson: Sonoran-Style Recipes Inspired by the Rich Culture of Southern Arizona

From my list on southwestern regional home cooking.

Who am I?

Jackie Alpers is an award-winning professional food photographer and author. She is a longtime contributing recipe developer & photographer for The Food Network, Refinery29, TheKitchn, TodayFood, Real Simple, National Geographic, and Edible Baja Arizona Magazine among others. She has been featured in articles for Reader’s Digest, CNN, Good Morning America, The New York Times & NPR. She writes, cooks, and styles recipes from her sun-lit studio in Tucson, Arizona.

Jackie's book list on southwestern regional home cooking

Jackie Alpers Why did Jackie love this book?

The Border Cookbook will teach you just about everything you need to know about the many different styles of Southwestern cuisine from the southern border regions. Trailing from northern Mexico to southern California, across Arizona and up through northern New Mexico, the book is organized by recipe instead of region so you can see how ingredients are uniquely utilized. Headers explain the history and regional significance of each dish.

By Cheryl Jamison, Bill Jamison,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Border Cookbook as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Now more than ever, Southwestern food is a hugely popular trend. As ingredients are becoming more readily available to at-home cooks, there is a great demand for simple, delicious, and authentic recipes that bring Mexican and Southwestern food to our own tables.
In their James Beard Book Award-winning cookbook, authors Cheryl Alters Jamison and Bill Jamison combine the best of Mexican and Southwest cooking, bringing together this large region's Native American, Spanish, Mexican, and Anglo culinary roots into one big, exuberant book-The Border Cookbook. In over 300 recipes they explore the common elements and regional differences of border cooking. They…


Book cover of Coyote Cafe: Foods from the Great Southwest, Recipes from Coyote Cafe

Jackie Alpers Author Of Taste of Tucson: Sonoran-Style Recipes Inspired by the Rich Culture of Southern Arizona

From my list on southwestern regional home cooking.

Who am I?

Jackie Alpers is an award-winning professional food photographer and author. She is a longtime contributing recipe developer & photographer for The Food Network, Refinery29, TheKitchn, TodayFood, Real Simple, National Geographic, and Edible Baja Arizona Magazine among others. She has been featured in articles for Reader’s Digest, CNN, Good Morning America, The New York Times & NPR. She writes, cooks, and styles recipes from her sun-lit studio in Tucson, Arizona.

Jackie's book list on southwestern regional home cooking

Jackie Alpers Why did Jackie love this book?

Can a cookbook change the course of your life? Perhaps. I attended art school in the late 1980’s. A favorite Sunday morning diversion was wandering through the aisles of the nearby Book Loft in Columbus, Ohio. One day I came across the Coyote Cafe Cookbook and my life was subtly changed forever. It put the seed of what would grow into a passion for Southwestern cuisine into my being, and it may have been part of the catalyst for me moving to this region. The recipes are intriguing and a little fancy. Cooking from this book is a treat.

By Mark Charles Miller,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Coyote Cafe as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Now in paperback!When Mark Miller opened the doors of Santa Fe'¬?s Coyote Cafe in 1987, the face of American cuisine changed forever. Blending centuries-old culinary traditions with modern techniques, Miller pioneered the emerging Southwestern cuisine, earning accolades and thrilling diners at the Coyote with his robust, inspired cooking. Originally published in 1989, COYOTE CAFE was Miller'¬?s first cookbook, and it has since sold over 200,000 copies, making it one of the best-selling full-color cookbooks ever. Nearly 15 years later, with Southwestern influences entrenched in kitchens across the country, we'¬?re excited to make this landmark book available to a new generation…


Book cover of Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life

Heidi Matonis Author Of Hatching Love

From my list on optimists and animal lovers.

Who am I?

I am an optimist. I jump out of bed in the morning ready to read and write. With my dog and cat by my side and a cup of coffee in hand, I lose myself in whatever I am working on. I am deeply curious about a gamut of subjects and constantly challenge myself to learn more. I am persistent and not afraid of hard work. Nature and animals are my bottomless well of inspiration and joy. I very much believe life is a journey and I try to enjoy each step.

Heidi's book list on optimists and animal lovers

Heidi Matonis Why did Heidi love this book?

This book was crucial in my path to veganism.

It is a memoir where Barbara Kingsolver writes humorously about a year of living off the land. She is not a vegetarian but must raise, kill, and butcher animals if she wants to eat meat. The result is, every time she eats meat, she weighs the emotional cost.

This reckoning has been my bible. I ask myself, would I be willing to kill the chick I raised to eat? Inevitably, the answer is “no.” 

The book is not a treaty encouraging people to live off the land, it’s the opposite. It makes you appreciate every bit of food you put in your mouth and the fact you did not have to grow, harvest, clean and cook it. 

By Lily Hopp Kingsolver, Barbara Kingsolver, Camille Kingsolver , Steven L Hopp

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Animal, Vegetable, Miracle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"We wanted to live in a place that could feed us: where rain falls, crops grow, and drinking water bubbles up right out of the ground."

Barbara Kingsolver opens her home to us, as she and her family attempt a year of eating only local food, much of it from their own garden. Inspired by the flavours and culinary arts of a local food culture, they explore many a farmers market and diversified organic farms at home and across the country. With characteristic warmth, Kingsolver shows us how to put food back at the centre of the political and family…


Book cover of Simple Dreams: A Musical Memoir

Bonnie Morris Author Of The Disappearing L: Erasure of Lesbian Spaces and Culture

From my list on women in rock, folk, and blues.

Who am I?

My expertise as a scholar of the women’s music movement spans 40 years--ever since I attended my first concert and music festival in 1981. A lecturer at UC-Berkeley, I’m the author of 19 books on women’s history, and published the first book on women’s music festivals, Eden Built By Eves, in 1999 (now out of print.) More recently I’ve organized exhibits on the women’s music movement for the Library of Congress, co-authored The Feminist Revolution (which made Oprah’s list), and I’m now the archivist and historian for Olivia Records.

Bonnie's book list on women in rock, folk, and blues

Bonnie Morris Why did Bonnie love this book?

This wonderfully written memoir by one of the most successful singers in American rock and popular music offers a thoughtful look at the artist’s rise to fame in multiple musical genres—from folk clubs to sold-out stadium concerts, to Broadway, torch songs, and the Mexican Canciones music of the author’s Sonora heritage. The book is a keen glimpse at the pressures of the road (and expectations for women in the spotlight), but a triumphant story of talent and artistic innovation.

By Linda Ronstadt,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Simple Dreams as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Linda Ronstadt was born in 1946 to a modest family outside Tucson. From an early age, she, her brother and sister began making their own music, eventually performing their own shows in the folk and Mexican traditions of the area.

By the time Ronstadt was in community college, she realized the music scene in LA was where she wanted to be, just in time for the folk revival that was sweeping the nation. Despite some setbacks with her first band-the Stone Poneys-she quickly found her niche as a soloist with the new record label run by David Geffen. Soon she…


Book cover of Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza

Bettina Aptheker Author Of Communists in Closets: Queering the History 1930s-1990s

From my list on helped me claim identity as a lesbian and feminist.

Who am I?

I'm an activist/scholar and I taught in the Feminist Studies department at the University of California, Santa Cruz for 40 years. My most popular class was Introduction to Feminism. Then I taught another large, undergraduate course Feminism & Social Justice. By the time I retired I had taught over 16,000 students, and worked with scores of graduate students. My online class, Feminism & Social Justice, on the Coursera Platform has been taken by over 107,000 people located on literally every continent. My teaching and writings are always anti-racist, and explicitly queer. They've drawn on my life experiences. They come out of my passion to lessen suffering, and embrace compassion. 

Bettina's book list on helped me claim identity as a lesbian and feminist

Bettina Aptheker Why did Bettina love this book?

Gloria Anzaldúa was born and raised in South Texas, growing up along the U.S.-Mexican border. For many years she lived in San Francisco, and then in Santa Cruz, California.

The first 113 pages of the book are stories and essays drawn from her life experiences as a woman of Mexican and Indian heritage, daily experiencing life at the physical border between the United States and Mexico.

She was raised in a strongly Catholic tradition, while also drawn to and inventing her own spirituality rooted in indigenous practices of harmony, balance, and reverence for the earth. She was a lesbian in a straight world that condemned her woman-loving sensibility.

Each of these is a “borderland” to be navigated and negotiated, and each of these borders is rich with insight, life, laughter, tears, violence, and love. The last 100 pages of the book is titled “Un Agitado Viento/ Ehécatl, The Wind.” It…

By Gloria Anzaldúa,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Borderlands/La Frontera as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"The U.S-Mexican border es una herida abierta where the Third World grates against the first and bleeds. And before a scab forms it hemorrhages again, the lifeblood of two worlds merging to form a third country--a border culture."--Gloria Anzaldúa

Rooted in Gloria Anzaldúa's experience as a Chicana, a lesbian, an activist, and a writer, the essays and poems in BORDERLANDS/LA FRONTERA: THE NEW MESTIZA profoundly challenged, and continue to challenge, how we think about identity. BORDERLANDS/LA FRONTERA remaps our understanding of what a "border" is, presenting it not as a simple divide between here and there, us and them, but…


Book cover of Three-Ten to Yuma and Other Stories

Bob Giel Author Of Shawnee

From my list on generating interest in the Western genre.

Who am I?

I have a life-long love of Westerns. I’ve researched the period and the events extensively. One of the first things I look for in any book I read is period accuracy. The books I write are historically accurate, though they are fiction. I’m on a mission, through my writing, to save the Western genre.

Bob's book list on generating interest in the Western genre

Bob Giel Why did Bob love this book?

While this is a short story, not a novel, it is, in my opinion, the quintessential psychological Western. Depicting the struggle of an ordinary man saddled with extraordinary tasks, to maintain his honor and his values in the face of temptation, it delves into the minds of the two participants, and takes the reader on a wild ride as they wait for the train. Tension you could cut with a knife replaces action, keeping the reader on the edge of his/her seat until the end.

By Elmore Leonard,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Three-Ten to Yuma and Other Stories as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The New York Times-bestselling Grand Master of suspense deftly displays the other side of his genius, with seven classic western tales of destiny and fatal decision . . . and trust as essential to survival as it is hard-earned.

Trust was rare and precious in the wide-open towns that sprung up like weeds on America's frontier—with hustlers and hucksters arriving in droves by horse, coach, wagon, and rail, and gunmen working both sides of the law, all too eager to end a man's life with a well-placed bullet. In these classic tales that span more than five decades—including the first…


Book cover of Desert Heat, Volcanic Fire: The Geologic History of the Tucson Mountains and Southern Arizona

Who am I?

Since my earliest memories, I have been fascinated with rocks, landscapes, and the movement of time. It was perhaps only fitting then, that I should have landed in the bottom of the Grand Canyon in the 1970s working as a backcountry ranger where I discovered GEOLOGY! Since then, my world view has been shaped by the record of earth history that is held in sedimentary rocks, mountain belts, and the colorful and varied landscapes of the Desert Southwest and Colorado Plateau. I am in love with these landscapes and know them well. This love affair causes me to visit other landscapes around the world and ponder their development. 


Wayne's book list on the geology and magic of the landscapes of the American Southwest and Colorado Plateau

Wayne Ranney Why did Wayne love this book?

I used to teach Topics in Regional Geology at Yavapai College (Prescott) and when preparing for field trips in the Santa Catalina and Tucson Mountains, I leaned heavily on this clearly written and engaging book with a fascinating storyline. Dr. Kring brings readers of all levels on a wondrous journey through time in the desert southwest. I think one of the most amazing aspects of the book is that none of the main parts of the story are readily obvious to anyone. Only geologic sleuthing has unearthed them.

By David A. Kring,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Desert Heat, Volcanic Fire as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

softcover


Book cover of You'd Be Home Now

Dev Jannerson Author Of The Women of Dauphine

From my list on dark, gritty YA for the omnivorous reader.

Who am I?

Two facts about me as a reader: I like books that deal with difficult issues, and I like reading a lot of them. There’s something about watching teens, for whom everything feels new, deal with the toughest stuff imaginable and come out the other side. I love a protagonist who has been through the wringer. Some people call these stories dark or morbid. I prefer to think of them as hopeful. My own writing history is as diverse as my reading habits. I’ve published in poetry, romance, and criticism, but these days I’m all about YA, like the politically-charged thriller I’m querying or my queer New Orleans ghost story, The Women of Dauphine

Dev's book list on dark, gritty YA for the omnivorous reader

Dev Jannerson Why did Dev love this book?

Bestselling Girl in Pieces author Glasgow knows her way around hard-hitting hyperrealism. (Plus, she writes beautifully about my once and future home of Tucson, Arizona.) In her latest, a modern take on Our Town, Emmy’s brother comes home from rehab, and Emmy prepares to fulfill the role she’s always had as the household rock and peacekeeper. But what about what she needs, and what if Joey has problems she can’t cover up? This novel’s depiction of drug addiction, and how its impact reverberates through families, is informed and unromanticized.

By Kathleen Glasgow,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked You'd Be Home Now as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling author of Girl in Pieces comes a stunning novel that Vanity Fair calls “impossibly moving” and “suffused with light”. In this raw, deeply personal story, a teenaged girl struggles to find herself amidst the fallout of her brother's addiction in a town ravaged by the opioid crisis.

For all of Emory's life she's been told who she is. In town she's the rich one--the great-great-granddaughter of the mill's founder. At school she's hot Maddie Ward's younger sister. And at home, she's the good one, her stoner older brother Joey's babysitter. Everything was turned on…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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