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Fronteras: Food, Culture, Diversity And Social Justice Are The Focus Of The New Network, IDENTITY Productions

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A new YouTube channel launched in March to share an inclusive, accurate portrait of America through BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and people of color) stories and experiences.

The IDENTITY Network on YouTube was founded by taco journalist Mando Rayo and Dennis Burnett, the producers and directors of the TV show “United Tacos of America” and the docu-series “The Tacos of Texas.”

The IDENTITY Network features episodes of “United Tacos of America” and two new programs that highlight women of color.

“ATE (ah-teh)” is hosted by Filipina and Houston resident, Isabel Protomartir. “Ate” is Filipino for “big sister.” Living in the country’s most diverse city inspired her passion for learning about different cultures through food.

“Tex-Mex Queen” is hosted by South Texas food blogger and cookbook author, Vianney Rodriguez. Her recipes and videos are also found online at SweetLifeBake.com.

carne-guisada_spring-rolls.jpg
IDENTITY Productions
Tex-Mex Queen carne guisada; ATE (ah-teh) spring rolls

Rayo said he wants to showcase people on his new online network who aren’t represented enough on major networks.

“When you look at how the representation on most of these networks that you see out there, whether it's Food Network or Bon Appetit, or even in film and television, people of color are not very represented in these platforms. So that's that's one thing that we're trying to change,” he said.

Rodriguez said food is the gateway to a greater discussion about diversity and understanding.

“The food draws people in,” she said. “But then you also get to hear the story of my culture and my heritage. My mami showed me this, my abuelita showed me this.”

Tex-Mex Queen: “My Abuela’s Refried Beans:

ATE (ah-teh): “Chicken Adobo”:

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Norma Martinez can be reached at norma@tpr.org and on Twitter at @NormDog1