Author Liddie Martinez shares stories about the inspiration behind her new book, The Chile Line Cookbook: Historic Recipes of Northern New Mexico Tuesday during the Rotary Club of Los Alamos meeting at Cottonwood on the Greens. A poster of the book’s cover sits in the foreground. Photo by Laura Gonzales
BY LINDA HILL
Local author Liddie Martinez captivated Rotary Club members Tuesday with her presentation about The Chile Line Cookbook: Historic Recipes of Northern New Mexico, recently released by Pajarito Press, co-owned by Nancy Bartlit and Mark Rayburn.
Martinez’s family history is deeply rooted in northern New Mexico, dating back to the 1500s, the years of Spanish colonization. Martinez explained that her inspiration came especially from memories of her grandmother’s cooking. Although recipes were handed down generation to generation throughobservation and oral history, she felt compelled to write a cookbook when her son could not remember how to make red chile. She did not want the legacy of these northern New Mexico culinary traditions to be lost, as many
were influenced by the migration of peoples along the El Camino Real from Mexico City to Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo (formerly San Juan Pueblo).
Recipe testing was conducted in Liddie’s family farm kitchen in Espanola on Saturday mornings, beginning at 4 a.m. As word traveled, neighbors began to appear before sunrise in their pajamas just to have a taste. The only criterion: “Does it taste like Grandma’s?”
Book-signing receptions have already been held at Los Luceros and in Los Alamos; a third will take place this Friday, Nov. 22 at the Farmers Market Pavilion at the Santa Fe Rail Yard, from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Martinez’s cookbook will also be available in Los Alamos at ‘projectY work’ in Central Park Square during Small Business Saturday, Nov. 30 and in other popular locations. For details, please go to: www.pajaritopress.com.”