Home Book editor Diana Kennedy, expert in Mexican cuisine, dies at 99

Diana Kennedy, expert in Mexican cuisine, dies at 99


She took a dim view of conductors and writers who didn’t do the same, and her criticism could be scathing. “They didn’t do the trip and the research that I did,” she told Saveur. “None of them, not one. I’ve been wandering around this country, wandering — that’s why I’m not rich! — and taking time, and no one else has. another only saw a certain pepper at a certain stage in a market in Chilapa, then came back six months later and saw other peppers.

Ms Kennedy moved permanently to Mexico in 1976, living first in Mexico City and then in an adobe house she built near Zitácuaro, about 100 miles to the west, where she gave intensive cooking lessons .

Information about survivors was not immediately available.

She went on to write essential cookbooks such as “Recipes From the Regional Cooks of Mexico” (1978), “The Art of Mexican Cooking” (1989), “From My Mexican Kitchen – Techniques and Ingredients” (2003) and “Oaxaca al Gusto”. : An Infinite Gastronomy” (2010).

In a culinary memoir, “Nothing Fancy: Recipes and Recollections of Soul-Satisfying Food” (1984), she interspersed with decidedly un-Mexican dishes like cold jellied tongue, Iranian grilled lamb, and crumpets.

In 2020, she was the subject of a documentary, “Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy”, directed by Elizabeth Carroll, which followed her as she cooked and taught in her solar-powered home. The New York Times called it “a vivid, uncritical portrait of a woman as passionate about composting as chilaquiles, a woman who will throw a tantrum if you put garlic in your guacamole.”

In her later years, Ms. Kennedy worked with the National Commission for the Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity, known by its Spanish acronym Conabio, to record and digitize her collection of recipes, drawings and cooking notes. Mexican food and the country’s native edible plants. .

In 2010, she gave the Chicago Tribune a terse assessment of her work. “I’m tenacious,” she said. “And I love to eat.”

Christine Chung contributed reporting.