Thursday, May 5, 2011

Cinco de Mayo- Dia de Celebración!

What is there not to like about celebrating Cinco de Mayo?    Everything about the holiday is fabulous.    The music, the food, the drinks!    The dancing, the papel picado, and the act of celebration.    Cinco de Mayo was my favorite day in Spanish class because we would get to experience their culture.   We would dance, eat delicious food, drink mexican soda and non-alcoholic drinks.   We would learn about holiday traditions and make our own papel picados.  It was always a fun time.

Now that I am an adult and those fun Spanish school days are over.   I try to continue to celebrate Cinco de Mayo since it is such an important holiday for the Mexican heritage.

For a little background and history.  Cinco de Mayo (the 5th of May), the date is observed in the United States as a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride, and to commemorate the cause of freedom and democracy during the first years of the American Civil War.   In the state of Puebla, the date is observed to commemorate the Mexican army's unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862, under the leadership of General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguín.

Contrary to widespread popular belief, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico's Independence Day.  It is a celebration of their victory over the French!

Tonight I will be celebrating with friends at one of my most FAVORITE Mexican restaurants in all of Chicago-  Mi Tierra.  Which in Spanish means, "My Land."   If you have not been, I highly recommend it.   It is a family-owned restaurant (which I love) and has a real feel about it.  The decorations, the staff, the food, the music- you can't help but to feel like you are in Mexico.  I am crossing my fingers they have a mariachi band tonight because I happen to be a big fan of mariachi music.

So in the spirit of Cinco de Mayo I thought I would share my favorites about this fun-filled holiday.  First off and of course the most important aspect, the drinks!

Margaritas!  Especially if they are made with Bethenny Frankel's Skinny Girl Margarita Mix.   If you have not tried a Skinny Girl Margarita, then hunny you have not lived! (sort of kidding).   Skinny Girl Margarita has made me like drinking non-frozen margaritas- I promise it is delicious.   Try Bethenny's Skinny Girl Margarita recipe and let me know what you think!


Papel Picado.  To learn how to make it, follow these easy instructions from no other than, the lovely Martha Stewart!

Guacamole!!  Here is Simply Recipes Guacamole recipe- it is very good!

Mariachi Bands.   Their music is fantastic and always gets me into the fiesta mood.

The Dancers!  Dancers typically perform native Mexican dances such as the Mexican Hat Dance and the Raspa.

What is your favorite part of the Cinco de Mayo celebration?   Do you have any plans for tonight?  I would love to hear what you are doing.

"Cinco de Mayo has come to represent a celebration of the contributions that Mexican Americans and all Hispanics have made to America."  ~ Joe Baca

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