Monica is a 5th generation mexican-american who grew up eating caldo de albondigas and weenies with tomatoes. She is a chicana that is as traditional  as eating americanized chinese food, italian and even Fourth of July food (Hot dogs and Hamburgers) for dinner . But, somehow she always seemed to comeback to real authentic comida mexicana and for many chicanos and even non-chicanos for that matter is always the case.

Preferably, eaten on a cold night, but with mexican madres, probably was cooked on the hottest day of the year!

WHO WAS THE BEST COOK IN YOUR FAMILY?

My mom. she was  really the only one that cooked in our house, unless my dad made his famous beans.

WHAT DO THOSE BEANS CONSIST OF?

Chorizo, beans and even egg.

THAT SOUNDS DELICIOUS. I THINK CHORIZO SHOULD BE IN ALL FOODS. WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE MEAL GROWING UP?

That’s a hard one because I was so picky growing up. I don’t even eat cheese. I really enjoyed the sides instead of the actual meal.

WHAT KIND OF SIDES?

stuffing,  [laughs] corn with A1 sauce and steamed vegetables.

REALLY? CORN WITH A1 SAUCE? IS THAT EVEN LEGAL?

[giggles] It was yummy . C’mon, who has never eaten corn with A1 sauce!?

WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST EXPERIENCE WITH FOOD OUTSIDE OF YOUR CULTURE?

I remember chinese food. its been so long.

WHAT DID YOU ENJOY ABOUT THE CHINESE FOOD?

It was just something different.

Fresh is the best!

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE  RESTAURANT AND WHERE IS IT LOCATED ?

Red Lobster. It used to be on Euclid and Romneya in Anaheim, but now I just go to the one on Harbor and Garden Grove Blvd.

I AM ASSUMING YOU LIKE MARISCOS THEN?

Of course! I absolutely love seafood. Shrimp cocktails with lots of ketchup and clamato. I can really just drink the clamato out of the bottle. It is delicious!,[laughs]. I really like shrimp enchiladas with , of course no cheese or sour cream.

NOT EVEN ON YOUR BEANS?

No way. Not anywhere on my plate.

THAT’S BLASPHEMY! WHY NO CHEESE?

I don’t like the texture or even just the taste. [grimaces]

NOT EVEN QUESO FRESCO??

No! too fresco for me [laughs]

Something smells like feet in here!

WHY DO YOU THINK MEXICAN FOOD IS SO POPULAR?

Other than its delicious, I don’t know.

DO YOU THINK TACO BELL IS MEXICAN FOOD?

Not even close. It’s watered down white-washed mexican food.

DO YOU EAT TACO BELL?

[laughs] yes, but it doesn’t qualify.

SO, WHERE IS YOUR FAVORITE MEXICAN RESTAURANT?

El Sabor on Gilbert and lincoln, right by Aztecas Restaurant. Shrimp enchiladas. NO CHEESE!

WHY IS EL SABOR SO GOOD?

Its quality and the feeling of it being homemade.

NOT THE MUCHACHAS IN MINI SKIRTS?

[laughs] no not exactly.

HOW DO YOU LIKE YOUR TACOS?

Fully loaded. Salsa, cilantro, onion, lemon and salt. And don’t forget two tortillas!

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About ocbarrios

Professor for Cal State Fullerton's Barrio Studies class for Fall 2011 semester

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