15 Celebrity Cookbooks To Liven Up Your Home Cooking

Chronicle Books/Amazon
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Trejo's Tacos: Recipes and Stories from L.A.: A Cookbook by Danny Trejo
Clarkson Potter/Amazon /

Trejo’s Tacos: Recipes and Stories from L.A.: A Cookbook by Danny Trejo ($18.49)

Angelenos will know Danny Trejo for his culinary endeavors as much as his acting career. The actor and restauranteur who dabbles in tacos, donuts, and more has released a compilation of recipes paying tribute to his hometown, Los Angeles, and its vibrant Latino culture. Trejo also provides anecdotes and insights into his unexpected journey from ex-con to boxing champ to actor to Narcotics Anonymous/Alcoholics Anonymous counselor to eventually successful restaurateur.

How does a man known for playing merciless, shirtless, tattooed, gun-toting, vengeance-thirsty, knife-throwing tough guys become the face of a restaurant group selling award-winning tacos, authentic barbacoa, and kale salad? I say this a lot and Trejo’s Tacos is proof of it: It’s not how you start. It’s how you finish.

While I play “the bad guy” in movies, I’ve been a lot of things over the years, including a boxer, a bodybuilder, a drug counselor, and, for a while, a real bad guy—which is how I ended up in San Quentin and Soledad state prisons in the 1960s. It was in prison that I got clean and sober. That was just one chapter in my story—since then, I have been in over three hundred movies, became a father to three kids, and acquired a collection of lowriders, vintage cars, and motorcycles. I still go to the penitentiaries, but now I’m on the other side of the bars as a drug counselor. I’ve traveled around the world at least ten times for my job, but I always come back home to Los Angeles. My life today is very different from what it was in the 1960s. I used to rob restaurants. Today I own eight of them. And we keep growing, with restaurants from Pasadena to Hollywood and LAX to Woodland Hills.

— Excerpt. © from Trejo’s Tacos