Chef Diana Davila, Executive Chef and Owner of Mi Tocaya Antojeria, was recently named one of the Best New Chefs in America by Food & Wine magazine. Her neighborhood Mexican restaurant is located in Logan Square in Chicago, and the meaning of its name even evokes the emotional connection between the guests and the food. “Mi Tocaya” means namesake, and “Antojeria” is a word which describes the visceral connection to a memory, especially to a taste memory.
During her recent Kitchen Chat with Chef Jaime Laurita and me in the Viking and La Cornue Showroom at the Merchandise Mart, Chef Diana explains that all of her dishes are meant to take us all on a journey around Mexico. Her squid ink and fried oyster taco (featured above) brought us along the coastal regions of Mexico as we tasted the ocean. Chef Davila loves to be a storyteller of the fresh and beautiful ingredients of Mexico.
Chef Diana Davila’s top tips for the home chef in making Mexican cuisine are as follows:
- Commit to making one dish and lead with a feeling;
- Have patience. Remember you are nursing what is in the pot and honoring the ingredients; and
- Ask for help
Savor the day!