3 Dishes to Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo is a celebration held on May 5, literally translating to May 5 in Spanish. The date is observed to commemorate the Mexican Army’s unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Cinco de Mayo traditions include parades, mariachi music performances and street festivals. However, the relatively minor holiday in Mexico has taken on perhaps even greater significance in the United States and even beyond.

Many Mexican restaurants Worldwide now recognise the holiday with various fiestas and celebration specials. It is a chance to get together with friends, eat delicious Mexican food and sip (okay, maybe shot) some tequila.

So, if you’re a food lover who loves any excuse to enjoy a Mexican feast, we think you’ll love these 3 dishes for Cinco de Mayo.

 

Grilled Elotes

Grilled elotes also known as Mexican Street Corn is one of the most delicious ways to enjoy corn on the cob. This dish is a classic street food in Mexico, where corn is either grilled or boiled, then dressed with a tasty combination flavours.

It is a dish that also makes for a great way to start a Mexican feast. If you’re in Brisbane, Pepe’s Mexican offers a pretty yummy version of this dish. However, if you want to make it at home, here’s how it’s done.

Dishes For Cinco De Mayo

Image and recipe via creolecontesa

 

INGREDIENTS
6 whole corn cobs
2 cups Queso Quesadilla Cheese, grated (otherwise Mozzarella will do just fine)
1 cup Crema Mexicana (sour cream)
2 sticks unsalted butter, melted (roughly 236 ml)
2 teaspoons chilli powder plus more for garnish
2 teaspoons creole seasoning
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoon Mexican oregano, dried, crushed
2 teaspoons black pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
extra virgin olive oil
lime wedges and green onions to garnish

 

METHOD

1). Prepare grill.
2). Mix seasoning blend and set aside.
3). Prepare corn, rinse, dry, and coat in olive oil.
4). Sprinkle spice blend over the corn and grill for about 7-8 minutes per side or until corn begins to char slightly.
5). Remove corn from grill and dip and melted butter.
6). Sprinkle more spice blend on corn, top with crema, cheese, and extra chilli powder.
7). Garnish with green onions and serve with a lime wedge.

 

Camarones

Camarones are simply prawns, but when prepared with an array of Mexican herbs, spices and sauces they make for the perfect Mexican party dish.

Fiesta Ole in Brisbane makes a delicious variety called Camarones Veracruzanos. These chilli prawns are cooked in a tomato and chilli sauce with garlic and herbs.

To make your own Camarones, try this Tequila Lime Prawns recipe. This is a dish best served with warm corn tortillas or over rice.

Dishes For Cinco De Mayo

Image and recipe via thelemonbowl

 

INGREDIENTS
1 pound (450 grammes) peeled and deveined prawns raw
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3 dried ancho chilli peppers stems and seeds removed
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic grated
2 ounces tequila (roughly 2 standard shots – 60 ml)
1/4 cup lime juice
2 tablespoons butter

 

METHOD

1). Sprinkle the prawns evenly with salt and pepper and set aside.
2). Place the dried chiles in a medium bowl and cover with boiling water. Steep chiles in the hot water until softened, about 20 minutes.
3). Puree softened chillies and 1/2 cup of the steeping liquid in a food processor or blender until smooth and set aside.
4). Heat a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat and add olive oil to the pan. Stir in garlic and warm until fragrant, about 15 seconds, being careful not to burn.
5). Add prawns to the pan, without overcrowding, and heat for 90 seconds per side. The minute the prawn turns pink, it is cooked so be careful not to overcook. It shouldn’t take more than 3-4 minutes total. Remove cooked prawns from the pan and set aside.
6). Stir the tequila into the hot skillet and use a wooden spoon to deglaze any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
7). Return the cooked prawns along with the pureed chillies and lime juice to the pan. Bring to a simmer then reduce to low and heat for 4-5 minutes or until warmed through.
8). Right before serving, finish the prawns with butter and stir until melted through. Check for seasoning and add more salt or pepper to taste.
9). Serve with warmed tortillas, rice or tossed into pasta if you wish.

 

Pork Carnitas

 

Dishes For Cinco De Mayo

Recipe and image via carlsbadcravings

 

INGREDIENTS

4-5 lbs (1.8-2.7kg) pork shoulder/pork butt trimmed of excess fat
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 teaspoons liquid smoke ** (you can usually find this in BBQ speciality stores)
2 bay leaves
1 onion, chopped
1 jalapeno, deveined, deseeded, chopped

 

WET SPICE RUB

3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon reduced sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 tsp EACH dried oregano, salt
1 tsp EACH chilli powder, garlic powder, onion powder
1/2 tsp EACH smoked paprika, pepper

 

METHOD

1). Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over high heat in a large nonstick skillet. Using tongs or 2 forks, sear pork on all sides until lightly browned. Transfer pork to cutting board until cool enough to handle.
2). Meanwhile, whisk together all of the Wet Spice Rub ingredients in a medium bowl. When pork is cool enough, massage Wet Spice Rub evenly all over then transfer pork to slow cooker. 3). Add orange juice, lime juice, liquid smoke, and 2 bay leaves to slow cooker. Top pork with onions and jalapeno. Cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours or on high for 5-6 hours OR until pork is falling apart tender and easily shreds with a fork.
4). Remove pork from slow cooker to cutting board, shred, and add back to slow cooker and toss with juices. Cook on low for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with foil.
5). After 20 minutes, remove pork (do NOT discard juices in a slow cooker) and add shredded pork to both baking sheets in an even layer. Drizzle with some of the remaining juices (about 1/4 cup) and bake for 15 minutes then broil to desired crispiness, watching closely so the meat doesn’t burn (about 5-10 minutes). Drizzle with additional juices and toss.
6). Serve warm in tortillas, on rice, salad, etc. with favourite toppings.

 

If cooking isn’t your passion, there is sure to be plenty of celebrations at your local Mexican.

Feliz Cinco De Mayo!

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