¡Ask a Mexican! tackles BurritoGate

Makes sense, though I see the term get used a lot for this kind of shite too (I don’t think these women are making a buck by doing this).

It’s hard to see, though, how making an ass of oneself by donning stereotypical (as opposed to actual) cultural accouterments is actual “cultural” appropriation.

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Isn’t it odd that Texas in part exists because Texans refused to be Mexicans, but keep insisting Tex-Mex merits respect.

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Of course, some would say this was appropriated first from New Mexico, where the breakfast burrito is synonymous with breakfast (as is Huevos Racheros, Carne Adovada, etc):

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That’s a difference between culture and government. Much of Texas has Mexican culture mixed in it - and other cultures.

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The women in the article described themselves as sneaking around spying on people in their homes. This is not my hyperbole, they used those words. It’s fucking gross and creepy.

And to act as though food prep techniques are somehow less earned or nuanced than other skills? Nope.

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You will have to point out to me which articles mention spying and sneaking. The two referenced in the BB article don’t mention it. The closest I found was “…we were peeking into the windows of every kitchen”, which can mean a lot of things. i.e., an open kitchen you can watch cooks prepare and watching how they do it.

I don’t think making one item, tortillas, requires an “apprenticeship”. Learning how to cook overall does.

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Because we the people can’t fix our broken culture as long as we are fighting each other.

And that is why these things are brought to your and my attention. To consume it; to preemptively disarm any meaningful social movement.

The Internet is a mighty tool for making tools…

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I don’t feel like this instance is particularly egregious, but I do think it being on the heels of a race-based murder heightens any sensitivity there might be in the local area and this general topic has been talked and written about specific to Portland before. I just chose to find out what the actual controversy is - which turned out to be much larger outlets (including BoingBoing) promoting the idea of SJWs gone wild because white people dared to make Mexican food. Both articles explicitly say that’s not the point of the article, but here we are 50-odd posts deep and few people have tried to express anything different than saying it was about white people making Mexican food.

I get what you are saying - chefs regularly go kitchen to kitchen and obsessively create recipes based on the experiences they have had exploring food. However, the women in question went once, and badgered the locals for the recipe and spied on the kitchens making it. They also had an idea to start a food stand for something, and decided that these tortillas stood out enough to be their thing to break into the market. Their food was immediately popular because of its unique aspects compared to other place. So I see where the distinction is - they have gained a profit from a trade secret style recipe of a place catering to white folks in Baja California. And the article never claims the food concept of “tortillas” is owned, it says the specific flour tortillas that these women liked on vacation was owned by the culture it was from.

Those very specific distinctions are important to any conversation about the topic, instead of your even more absurd claim that McDonald’s breakfast burrito tortillas are the same as hand made and stretched tortilla dough. I mean, seriously.

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[quote=“Mister44, post:94, topic:101812”]
I don’t think making one item, tortillas, requires an “apprenticeship”. Learning how to cook overall does.
[/quote]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Itamae

[quote]Typically, after five years or so spent working with a master or teacher itamae, the apprentice is given his first important task related to making sushi: preparation of the sushi rice. The rice is prepared according to the strict instructions of the senior itamae, and each sushi restaurant has its own “secret” recipe of rice, salt and rice vinegar. Once the senior itamae is satisfied with the consistency of the sushi rice made daily by the apprentice, the apprentice may then be promoted.[/quote]You might think it’s trivial to make a certain food, but people have probably killed one another over pie dough which is basically the same ingredients as a tortilla.

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Puerto Nuevo is for the most part restaurants all serving the same thing (lobster menu, margaritas and cerveza) squeezed between the highway and the ocean. I don’t think the white ladies were looking into anyone’s homes. I also don’t think the tortilla makers were trying to keep any secrets, they were just too busy working to answer questions from white tourists who could be presumed to have been inebriated. Reasonable prejudice, because Puerto Nuevo.

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And honestly, decent tortilla making can be learned. What bugged me was their whole road trip thing like they were gaining access to some special secret knowledge. Their attitude towards it is what smacks of cultural appropriation to me, not that they were making tortillas and burritos.

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This is consistent with the tone of his column (he is a comedic writer), which Mexplains things in English to conservative Orange County.

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Just who exactly are attacking the Kook burrito makers? It really does sound like a joke. If this “cultural appropriation” charge is seriously raised, it’s an even bigger joke.

And, just who closes their establishment when they get so much publicity?

Its a food cart. They have vastly less overhead than a traditional restaurant. They can relocate if, for some reason, the local people signify their displeasure. The only real reason you’ll close your business is if your product is not wanted or you have mismanaged your business.

I’m a burrito fanatic. Not to brag, but I’ve had the greatest known burrito. And if I’d heard about their food from this article, I would absolutely have gone out of my way to buy their burrito. I’m sure there are many hungry thousands in Portland who think likewise.

So, I’ve got to believe the reason for their closure is only distantly related to the present “scandal.”

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Indeed, in the grocery store I’ll go out of my way for you can buy packages of them straight off the grill- and some times of day the line is quite long.

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Exactly.
People always say “you can’t get such-and-such” food in “this place”. That is complete BS.
I good food town will have good kinds of food from all over.
Usually it’s pizza and Mexican food that people argue about. I’ve had pizza all over NYC. There are plenty of joints here on the west coast and southwest that make awesome pies. I just had one Sat night in Phoenix while in town - Federal Pizza - and I’ve had others there while visiting (I go a lot for work) and here in San Diego.
It’s not rocket science to make anything well - either the establishment wants to do it right or they don’t.

I have it on good authority that Italian restaurants in New York are run by Albanians. Kid you not.

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And all too few people from outside Chicagoland realize that Chicago has its own (very delicious) style of thin-crust pizza as well. There’s a slight similarity to St. Louis-style (especially in that it’s cut in a grid), but Chicago thin-crust isn’t quite as thin, and uses conventional mozzarella instead of Provel cheese.

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It was a bit of reading through a lot of crap, but I think this is a really good rolundown with a variety of experiences from a variety of people in the business.


If you care at all about the context of what has been said, some other links to examples of failures in food media, and some other links to what people feel counts appropriation with regards to restaurants. Take a look, then everyone might make a whole lot more sense.

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Good read. Thanks for posting.

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lol, it’s only a “gendered” slur because it uses the feminine form. it just means idiot/asshole, pretty mild really. if you want to get really insulting in spanish you could do a lot worse, especially if you want to bring female relatives and their body parts into the equation.

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