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What to make for Cinco de Mayo?

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38 replies to this topic

#1 amccomb

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Posted 31 March 2006 - 09:53 AM

So, I have a tradition of having a huge feast for Cinco de Mayo every year. About 25 people come to my house for food, conversation, and drinking.

Some things stay the same - I always make tamales with pork/raisins/almonds/chiles. I always make a spiced sangria. I have been told I must always make Tres Leches cake.

Other things vary. I started out the first year going more Tex Mex along with a huge bowl of ceviche. The next year I made quesadillas with non-traditional fillings such as beef tenderloin and blue cheese, or curried duck and mango chutney, or turkey, cranberries, and brie. The next year I made Chiles en Nogada (which was not well accepted) and chilaquiles. Two years ago I made a green pumpkin seed mole with chicken and a oaxacan red mole with lamb shanks. Last year I made about several different taco fillings (mostly from the Rick Bayless books) including bacony beans, garlicy greens, smoked chicken with tomatillo sauce, shredded beef with chipotle sauce, seasoned ricotta cheese, a huitlacoche filling...I also made some condiments like pickled onions, pickled chipotles, guacamole, crema, and several salsas. Lastly, I made both corn and flour tortillas from scratch.

This year, I am totally blanking! i am looking for some ideas that are different from what I have done before. I know I want to try empanadas this year, and would appreciate some help locating a recommended recipe or any tips or techniques.

I thought about doing the pork and chicken dish from All About Braising by Molly Stevens, and maybe another mole. Since both of those could be used as taco filling, I thought about doing the flour and corn tortillas again, as well as making a spicy shrimp filling.

I also thought about going a different direction and doing one-pot dishes like soups or casseroles. But again, I'm blanking on ideas!

I'm also looking for ideas for other tamale fillings, and some other desserts. I've done flan, and I think I'll do that again this year, but I really feel like I want to add another dessert.

I am also hunting for cookbooks that might inspire me, so any suggestions there would be greatly appreciated, too!

#2 Pontormo

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Posted 31 March 2006 - 01:02 PM

I can't think of anything more inspiring than Docsconz's report of his culinary trip to Mexico earlier this month.
"Viciousness in the kitchen.
The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

#3 goldie

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Posted 31 March 2006 - 01:56 PM

The food you have done in the past sounds amazing. I love my Rick Bayless cookbook and use it often. How about doing a unified theme? For example, you could do street food (aqua frescas, the grilled meats, etc.- I'm pretty sure that the Bayless cookbook has several recipes). Or perhaps you could pick a region and focus on food from there.
Best wishes!

#4 DTBarton

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Posted 01 April 2006 - 10:08 AM

You mentioned one pot dishes. How about some different chilis?

Maybe a pot of red, a pot of green, use different meats. Make a big pot of small red and black beans seasoned with chili peppers and onions and broth. Different toppings like cheese, onion, hot sauces, green onions, jalapenos. Tortillas and rice would be Mexican, but I really like corn bread and hominy with the chili. But then, I'm a gringo.

#5 ludja

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Posted 01 April 2006 - 07:57 PM

Your previious menus do indeed sound wonderful.

Do you have the first Bayless book? There is a great sounding recipe for a salpicon in there--a cold chicken salad with vinegar and chiles and lots of other good things. We were just talking a bit about these in an intersesting thread on Yucatan food.

Looking throught the Yucatan thread may give you some great ideas as well although it may require a bit of hunting to track down the recipes.

Have you ever had or made a Mexican chicken soup? These are wonderful and could be fun to serve with all the additional condiments for people to add--freshly squeezed lime, avocado, radishes chiles, cilantro, etc.
"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"


#6 Africa Flores

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Posted 02 April 2006 - 05:50 AM

Cinco de Mayo is not really a celebration in Mexico.....
It is more a USA celebration (marketing from beer company) one more opportunity to spend more money.

Cinco de Mayo is the day that Mexicans fight and liberate the village of Puebla from French troops.

Cinco de Mayo is definetly not the independance day of Mexico.
Indep. Day is September 16.....this is where you will see most Mexicans People celebrating.


Anyway, to find idea of original recipes from Mexico you can check Rick Bayless books (sorry if I mispelled his name), every he does is really Mexican (no Fusion of any kind. I hope that will help you.

sincerely

Africa :smile:

#7 MollyB

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Posted 04 April 2006 - 12:27 PM

You might want to look at California Rancho Cooking by Jacqueline Higuera McMahan for some ideas. The recipes come from the mix of Spanish, Mexican, and native cooking that evolved as California was settled. It has a chapter on "celebration" meals, a chapter on grilled foods, and the recipes look great. It sounds like California rancho life included lots of parties, so this might be a good source for you. I've only tried a few recipes from it, but what I've tried has been very good.

I recall that there's one substantial casserole-y dish, called "Chilena Pie" (or something like that) that has chicken and beef and other tasty things in it; there was also a seafood variation, too. I've wanted to try it but haven't had a big enough crowd to feed it to since I got the book! There are also a few tamale recipes in the book, one of which is a sweet dessert tamale that might make an interesting dessert for your party.

#8 Abra

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Posted 07 April 2006 - 09:17 PM

You could make sacahuil

Posted Image
a giant chicken-filled banana leaf-wrapped sort of tamale pie. Serves 20 easily.

#9 amccomb

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Posted 07 April 2006 - 09:31 PM

You could make sacahuil

Posted Image
a giant chicken-filled banana leaf-wrapped sort of tamale pie.  Serves 20 easily.

View Post


Oh yeah, that's what I want!

Do you have any hints or suggestions, or a tried-and-true recipe you would be willing to share?

Also, I tried finding banana leaves last year, and could not find them locally. Is there somewhere I could order them online?

Thanks!!

#10 Abra

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Posted 07 April 2006 - 09:50 PM

I'll PM you the recipe, as it's huge and would be tedious to sanitize for the guidelines. I adapted a recipe from the Sunset Magazine website, and it's really yummy, as well as impressive.

Frozen banana leaves are easy to find in an Asian market, if you have one where you are.

#11 gini

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Posted 27 April 2006 - 09:31 AM

For some unbeknownest team building reason, my company has decided to have a Cinco de Mayo potluck. I am supposed to bring something. We have the following appliances: toaster, microwave, and toaster oven. Any ideas?
Eating pizza with a fork and knife is like making love through an interpreter.

#12 dls

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Posted 27 April 2006 - 04:45 PM

For some unbeknownest team building reason, my company has decided to have a Cinco de Mayo potluck.  I am supposed to bring something. We have the following appliances: toaster, microwave, and toaster oven.  Any ideas?

View Post


Cerveza! :smile:

Edited by dls, 27 April 2006 - 06:03 PM.


#13 Jason Perlow

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Posted 27 April 2006 - 06:35 PM

Chicken Mole Enchiladas -- the stacked kind versus the rolled kind. This way you can make it like a casserole dish.
Jason Perlow
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#14 gini

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Posted 04 May 2006 - 05:31 AM

Thanks for the suggestions! The company is actually supplying the beer. Looks like I'm making some flan.
Eating pizza with a fork and knife is like making love through an interpreter.

#15 SuzySushi

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Posted 29 April 2007 - 11:47 AM

Reviving this thread because Cinco de Mayo is coming up and we're invited to a potluck...

Now, should I make empanadas or flan? Decisions, decisions! :biggrin:
SuzySushi

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#16 K8memphis

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Posted 29 April 2007 - 12:36 PM

... but I really feel like I want to add another dessert...

View Post

Consider making my cake that was inspired by my son-in-law Jeremy whose birthday is Cinco De Mayo. Ole` Ole` :biggrin:

edited to say >> Oh oops I didn't notice the dates on the posts. Oh well, still a great Cinco De Mayo cake-ola.

Edited by K8memphis, 29 April 2007 - 12:40 PM.


#17 Kayakado

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Posted 01 May 2007 - 07:11 AM

A traditional Independence recipe is Chiles en Nogado (red white and green) and very yummy.

#18 hummingbirdkiss

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Posted 01 May 2007 - 08:50 AM

for the red white and green as well I serve both red and green chilequiles with lots of mixed white Mexican cheese layered in and on top
easy to take to a pot luck and really good!


in the evening and only if you have the pot luck at your own house..what we do is make a fire pit to sit around listen to music ..and we have sopapillas (I fry them over propane in a huge wok away from the fire pit) serve them with fresh ground cinnamon spiked honey butter ..and Abuelita hot chocolate made with lots of cream and a couple of shots of rum ...

nice sugary rum rush!

#19 Darienne

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:39 PM

Reviving this thread...well, just because I am on such a Mexican roll these days.

I'll make something suitable. I want to try a new ice cream recipe from Gerson's My Sweet Mexico, Helado de Queso / Requeson Cheese Ice Cream. Never had cheese ice cream.

Does anyone celebrate this unusual holiday and what are you making/eating?
Darienne


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Cheers & Chocolates

#20 heidih

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:51 PM

I was pretty much raised in Los Angeles with the info presented in Wiki. A marketing tool more than anything. The beer and tequila and margarita mix distributors have a field day. However- I would love to see some menus because the cuisines of the regions are wonderful on any given day :biggrin:

#21 EatNopales

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 01:16 PM

Cinco de Mayo is not really a celebration in Mexico.....
It is more a USA celebration (marketing from beer company) one more opportunity to spend more money.

Cinco de Mayo is the day that Mexicans fight and liberate the village of Puebla from French troops.

Cinco de Mayo is definetly not the independance day of Mexico.
Indep. Day is September 16.....this is where you will see most Mexicans People celebrating.


Anyway, to find idea of original recipes from Mexico you can check Rick Bayless books (sorry if I mispelled his name), every he does is really Mexican (no Fusion of any kind. I hope that will help you.

sincerely

Africa :smile:



Absolutely not (entirely) true... Cinco de Mayo is a huge celebration in Zacapoaxtla, Puebla :wink:


Cinco de Mayo celebrates the heroics of General Ignacio Zaragoza's calvary & the tactical, unpredictable brilliance of the Zacapoaxtla indians (a mexikah tribe) under his command (who provoked a bovine stampede among other tactics to rout the more numerous, better armed French troops)......

.... soooo any Cinco de Mayo celebration should celebrate the gastronomic traditions of Puebla... and the Zacapoaxtla people's specifically. And instead of cheesy Mariachi Fiesta CD collections.. a more Egullet caliber music choice might be digging up Aniceto Ortega's 19th century hommage to Ignacio Zaragoza:



And the Pre-Hispanic Zacapoaxtla dances collectively referred to as the Mitoticuicalli including the most famous Danzas de Quetzales:






More info on Zacapoaxtla:

http://www.e-local.g...pios/21207a.htm




A meal featuring their regional specialties would look like:

Masa (Tlacoyos stuffed with a local runner bean - Rancho Gordo could be useful here -, Molotes stuffed with Potato & Chorizo hash, & Squash Blossom Turnovers)

Mole (Chayotextle)... a green Mole made from Chayote flesh, Masa & Poblanos & Jalapanos, onions & aromatics... served with Chayote root fritters, braised turkey &

Sweets - Guayabate (homemade Guava Paste), Dulce de Calabaza (whole candied pumpkins), Dulce de Higo (whole candied figs flavored with fig leaves)


Drinks.. Zacapoaxtla is famous for their fruit & herb wines and liquers made from
Oranges, Quince, Capulines (a native cherry like fruit), Aniz, Apple & Toronjil (related to Lemon Balm herb)

Edited by EatNopales, 03 May 2011 - 01:18 PM.


#22 AAQuesada

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 01:23 PM

Cinco de Mayo celebrates the battle of Puebla. Since Puebla is also an area well known in Mexico for good food why don't you don't make food from that region? Molotes, Chile en Nogada, Mole Poblano, Cemitas (Pueblan ver of the Torta). There is also a long tradion of pastry and candy making.

Edited by AAQuesada, 03 May 2011 - 01:40 PM.


#23 Darienne

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 01:40 PM

You sir, are a gentleman and a scholar. I will return to your post when I have some sitting time.

I was disappointed that the dancers were so 'fuzzy'. Their headdresses were spectacular and it would have been nice to see them up close.

An additional problem is that I have no Spanish and could not read the Enciclopedia de los Municipios de México Puebla ZACAPOAXTLA. I might try to figure out how to get the title back to the stage where I can ask for a translation.

I'll check out those foods later. I am happy to say though, that I did know about the holiday from before.

Thanks again.
Darienne


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Cheers & Chocolates

#24 Darienne

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 01:41 PM

Cinco de Mayo celebrates the battle of Puebla. Since Puebla is also an area well known in Mexico for good food why don't you don't make food from that region? Molotes, Chile en Nogada, Mole Poblano, Cemitas (Pueblan ver of the Torta). There is also a long tradion of pastry and candy making.

I have Fany Gerson's My Sweet Mexico which has an entire section on the confections and pastries of Puebla. Thanks.
Darienne


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Cheers & Chocolates

#25 EatNopales

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 02:02 PM

You sir, are a gentleman and a scholar. I will return to your post when I have some sitting time.

I was disappointed that the dancers were so 'fuzzy'. Their headdresses were spectacular and it would have been nice to see them up close.

An additional problem is that I have no Spanish and could not read the Enciclopedia de los Municipios de México Puebla ZACAPOAXTLA. I might try to figure out how to get the title back to the stage where I can ask for a translation.

I'll check out those foods later. I am happy to say though, that I did know about the holiday from before.

Thanks again.



Hola Darienne... the E-Municipos site is a fantastic resource.. a quick write up on every municipality in the country (about 2,600 or so) with a quick summary of history, ethnic groups, languages spoken, economy, agriculture, gastronomic traditions, religious traditions & festivities etc.,


If you download Google's browser Chrome.. it is very easy to get a fairly competent translation... after you go to the site.. right click over the page, choose Translate to English... and voila the entire page is produced in English instantly.

#26 Dakki

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 03:40 PM

A couple of points:

May 5, while not the most important national celebration (that would probably be September 16, followed by November 20) is a major holiday in Mexico, moreso in in the area surrounding Puebla, as noted.

The battle itself (May 5 1862) was a tactical victory for the Mexican side, marked by the brilliance of defending General Ignacio Zaragoza, who led a largely untrained, unequipped force against a professional army who outnumbered his troops 2:1. The conduct of the French attack was marred by several mistakes, including frontal attacks against entrenched positions, inadequacy of supporting artillery and perhaps most importantly, the assumption that the people of Puebla were friendly towards the French and would greet them as liberators, to borrow a phrase.

Strategically the battle was far less significant. Reinforcements were received by the French, the support of the Conservative faction in Mexico was negotiated and Puebla was taken on May 17 of 1863, followed by Mexico City on June 7. This paved the way for the establishment of the Second Mexican Empire, a virtual French puppet state, although with strong support from the Conservative faction. The legitimate government, meanwhile, withdrew to the north of the country, where they held on until support in the form of arms and money began to flow from the United States, which had just finished fighting its own Civil War. The French forces withdrew in 1866 and Maximilian held on, supported by Conservative die-hards, until he was finally captured on May 15 1867, court-martialed and shot on June 19 of the same year.

Anyway!

I'm making turkey in mole poblano (literally, in the style of Puebla). Call it the obvious choice.
This is my skillet. There are many like it, but this one is mine. My skillet is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it, as I must master my life. Without me my skillet is useless. Without my skillet, I am useless. I must season my skillet well. I will. Before God I swear this creed. My skillet and myself are the makers of my meal. We are the masters of our kitchen. So be it, until there are no ingredients, but dinner. Amen.

#27 kalypso

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 04:08 PM

Dakki, I'm with you...I'm making Mole Poblano, but I'm waiting till Saturday :sad: because I won't have the time tomorrow.

#28 Goatjunky

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Posted 03 May 2011 - 08:04 PM

1000 Mexican Recipes by Marge Poore is a fantastic book. Never let me down

Edited by Goatjunky, 03 May 2011 - 08:05 PM.


#29 Darienne

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 07:09 AM

Time for Cinco de Mayo 2012. Not to mention the one year anniversary of splitting the back of my head open and being in ER most of the night.

We are having Cream of Poblano Soup recipe, Capirotada - haven't settled on a recipe as of this morning and am looking at about 6 , and yesterday made some Salami de Chocolate recipe which Ed likes and I think is so-so only (which may be my doing???). Not exciting...but then we don't eat much for supper.

And oh, I have three homemade frozen yogurts in the freezer, including Margarita. I'll eat anything with lime and Tequila in it.

Who else is celebrating just cuz?
Darienne


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Cheers & Chocolates

#30 Doodad

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 09:29 AM

Daughter is coming over and we are all making sous vide conchinita. I have the orange and spices frozen to put in the bag and the daughter started the pickled peppers and onions last night. Popping it in the bath this evening.





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