Cinco de Mayo Part I

I’m excited to have this opportunity in sharing with you a little bit of my Mexican culture. I was born and raised in South Texas; the second of 4 girls. My grandparents were from Mexico but my parents were born in Texas. They were pastors and annually, we would travel as a family for 2-3 weeks during the summer break on mission trips all over Mexico. I remember starting these trips as early as being 6 years old, all the way to being 25. I hope I get to travel Mexico again.

On these trips, I fell in love with Mexico; it will always be dear to me. I met some of the most amiable people and ate delectable dishes. I got to see Mexico’s beautiful mountains as we drove through La Sierra Madre Oriental and La Sierra Madre del Sur. We had our wild experiences visiting some villages and jungles, witnessed the busy life of Mexico City, Irapuato, Cd. Victoria, and relaxed in exotic beaches. We traveled to the less-touristic places; allowing us to see Mexico for what it really is.

Cinco de Mayo reminds me of all this and there’s so much more to it.

What is the meaning of Cinco de Mayo?

First it should not be confused with Mexico’s Independence Day in September 16. Cinco de Mayo is a day to celebrate Mexican heritage and culture. It was inspired by the Battle of Puebla, which occurred May 5, 1862, in Puebla, Mexico; its victory giving a great significance in national unity, patriotism, and pride. In 1863, on the anniversary of the battle, Mexicans and Latinos living in California were credited to be the first ones to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. In the state of Puebla, Mexico, the anniversary of the battle is commemorated as a holiday, as well.

What happened at the Battle of Puebla?

On May 5th, 1862, the 8,000-strong French army attacked the Mexican army of 4,500 near Puebla, Mexico. At the time, the French army was considered to be “the premier army of the world” and had not been defeated in over 50 years; they were unexpectedly defeated by the Mexican army that day. This victory gave a great morale boost to the Mexican people.

So there you have it. 🙂 Here are a few treats and dishes I love. Their recipes will be featured throughout the month of May.

Conchas Mexicanas

These are great for breakfast or for an afternoon snack with cafe con leche (coffee with lots of milk).

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Gorditas de Pollo (Chicken Gorditas)

The first time ever eating these, I had a Gordita de Papa con Queso (Potato with Cheese Gordita) while visiting Irapuato, Gto., Mexico. It’s a corn cake made out of Maseca flour. I fill mine with a pinto bean spread, shredded chicken, lettuce, and tomatoes.They can be topped with Queso Fresco and drenched in any salsa you love!

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Tomatillo Salsa and Tex-Mex Salsa

Everybody knows about salsa. It is what makes a party; well, besides the cake. This year I started making Tomatillo salsa. In my opinion, its very good with Mexican dishes made of chicken. Beside it is my very own Tex-Mex salsa. Its great with beef fajitas!

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Stay tuned for Cinco de Mayo Part II.

Ole!

-Liz

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