Quelites: The Spectrum of Superfoods from Indigenous Mexico

Quelites: The Spectrum of Superfoods from Indigenous Mexico

Date: September 26, 2020

Time: 6:00 - 7:45 PM

Quelites: The Spectrum of Superfoods from Indigenous Mexico

Virtual talk and cooking session by Beatriz Paz Jiménez
Organized by: Su-Ying Lee with the Art Gallery of Burlington
Date/Time: Saturday September 26, 6:00 – 7:45 PM
Registration: PWYC (suggested donation of $20)

Learn to cook the Mexican post-colonial dish, molletes guided by artist Beatriz Paz Jiménez. Molletes is a dish from the central region of Mexico, made with bolillos (baguette-like bread) sliced and filled with refried black beans, topped with cheese and pico de gallo. Epazote, a millenary plant which has been used both as a condiment and medicine by indigenous peoples such as Mayans and Aztecs, is a key ingredient of the dish. The name epazote means odorous herb and comes from “Épatl” which means skunk. Molletes are a food based on pre-Hispanic traditions that have literally and symbolically adapted over time and are a form of resistance and food sovereignty in Indigenous communities.

Enjoy your molletes for dinner as Beatriz presents Quelites: The Spectrum of Superfoods from Indigenous Mexico, a talk on wild greens that contain high nutritional content, the inheritance of pre-Hispanic agriculture and gastronomy. Quelites grow in the milpa, an agricultural microcosm crafted in Mesoamerica more than 2000 years ago. Paz Jiménez will introduce this sustainable, self-sufficient agricultural ecosystem and elaborate on how quelites contribute to food diversity, soil quality, and naturally control pests; and how classism, racism and the threats against milpa permaculture are the biggest risks to their survival. While cooking with and consuming the herb epazote she brings forward the fraught events of the past and present to elicit a conversation on colonization.

Event Schedule:

6:00-6:15 PM: Introductions
6:15-6:45 PM: Cooking Instruction
6:45-7:25 PM: Beatriz Paz Jiménez’s talk
7:25-7:45 PM: Question period

Prior to event you will receive:

• Instructional document with a list of the ingredients you will need for the cooking portion of the event. *NOTE you will need to have cooked black beans for the event (details in document).
• Background booklet
• Epazote, a dried herb from Mexico that is a necessary ingredient. Pick yours up at the AGB’s Brock Lobby desk, 1333 Lakeshore Road, Burlington.
• Event Zoom link


Beatriz Paz Jiménez is a cultural producer, visual artist, editor, researcher and an Indigenous rights, prison abolition and food sovereignty activist. She is of mixed Indigenous and settler decent and lives in Mexico City. She works in the mediums of collage, book-art, drawing, performance, and social engagement.

Su-Ying Lee is an independent curator and has also worked in institutions as Assistant Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA), Curator in Residence at the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, and Assistant Curator at the Art Gallery of Mississauga. She received a Masters Degree in Curatorial Studies at the University of Toronto and is an alumnus of the Toronto Arts Council/Banff Centre’s Cultural Leaders’ Lab. Her projects have taken place across Canada, in Hong Kong and Mexico City. She is co-curator of the third Kamias Triennial, which will take place in Quezon City, Metro Manila in February 2020. She lives in *Toronto, Canada, the traditional land of the Huron-Wendat, the Seneca, and most recently, the Mississaugas of the Credit River. Toronto continues to be the meeting place and home to many Indigenous people from across **Turtle Island. She is grateful to have the opportunity to live and work on this land.

*Tkaronto (Mohawk)/Taranton (Wendat) /Toronto (settler colonial)
**Turtle Island is a name that many Indigenous people use for North America

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