TACO-TASTIC

Houston Chef Publishes New Book on Tacos

Victoria Elizondo’s debut book, which contains more than 60 taco recipes, will turn your Taco Tuesday into a weeklong affair.

By Daniel Renfrow August 2, 2022

Chef Victoria Elizondo's Taco-Tastic cookbook comes out on October 25.

If there’s an expert on tacos in Houston, it’s Victoria Elizondo, the 31-year-old, Mexican-born chef behind popular East End restaurant Cochinita & Co., which opened inside Kickin’ Kombucha in the early part of 2021. While Elizondo has spent the past year dazzling local foodies through her inspired, authentic, and delectable Mexican cooking by way of dishes like her mushroom tinga tacos, almendrado mole tacos, and pibil tacos, this fall she’ll be dazzling readers both stateside and across the pond through her new cookbook on, you guessed it, tacos.

Taco-Tastic, a taco-centric cookbook she just finished writing for British publishing group Wellbeck, comes out on October 25, and Elizondo couldn’t be more proud. “It’s a lot,” she says of the book, which contains more than 60 taco recipes. While the title and theme of the book existed long before Elizondo became involved with the project, the publishing company responsible for it was missing the book’s most essential ingredient—a chef to actually run with the idea. Through chance, Elizondo was connected to the publishing group through a Houston-based photographer, and the group decided to sign Elizondo on for the project. 

Taco-Tastic is available for preorder at a variety of retailers, including Brazos Bookstore.

Although the new book has been in the works for over a year, Elizondo didn’t get the final go-ahead to start writing it until four months ago, so completing the book on time was a feat of endurance for both her and the local food photographer she partnered up with for the project. 

So what’s in the book? Fans of Elizondo’s cooking at Cochinita & Co. will be delighted to hear that some authentic tacos make appearances in the project. But while Houston is a city that is overflowing with global ingredients, Elizondo recognizes that isn’t the case everywhere, and the publishing company wanted the book to appeal to the average home cook, whether that’s a suburban soccer mom in Michigan or an urban professional in London. “They wanted the book to cater to a lot of people,” Elizondo says. “They wanted the recipes to be easy to make, and the ingredients had to be easy to find.” 

So while the book includes authentic recipes like barbacoa, it also includes less authentic but delicious-sounding tacos like one constructed from purple yams and vegan chorizo, another made from quinoa and sweet potatoes, and a tuna tostada with sesame seeds. The taco tome, which clocks in at 176 pages, is divided into eight chapters covering everything from salsas and sides to breakfast tacos and vegetarian and vegan options. Those eager to snatch it up ahead of its release date can preorder the book from a variety of national retailers, but why not celebrate a local chef by ordering a copy from Brazos Bookstore and keep your dollars in the community? That is, if you haven’t earmarked all of your discretionary spending for yet another visit to Cochinita & Co.

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