No matter what your ethnicity or heritage may be, there is one general rule about party-planning in the United States: people love Cinco De Mayo. It’s that simple, really. On what other holiday is it possible to have Happy Hour for a full day.
Many people do not realize that Cinco De Mayo (which means “Fifth of May” in Spanish) is actually a military-related Mexican holiday. This was the date that the Mexican militia took victory over the French army at the Battle of Puebla in 1862.
Celebrating the Mexican ethnic contributions to both food, music and especially beverages, Cinco de Mayo has taken on a significance beyond that in Mexico. The date is perhaps best recognized in the United States as a date to celebrate the culture and experiences of Americans of Mexican ancestry, much as St. Patrick’s Day, Oktoberfest, and the Chinese New Year are used to celebrate those of Irish, German, and Chinese ancestry respectively.
Some of my favorite dishes come from the flavors that center around Cinco De Mayo.
This year, create a sensational Taco Bar, in which guests can create their own delicious treats, so that you can get out of the kitchen and enjoy your own party!
Then, because no Cinco De Mayo is complete without the delicate (or not-so-delicate) margarita, pair the tacos with a Margarita Bar. There are so many things you can do with a margarita, and one of my obsessions is the endless uses of salt and pepper – you can literally use them for everything! So naturally, I wanted to create a margarita that reflected the yin and yang of the spice world.
My Salt & Pepper Margarita is the unabashed compliment to any Cinco De Mayo dish. Tequila infused with organically-grown Thai Chilis gives the margarita its signature bite. To balance, I have dusted the rim with a smoked sea salt. Both savory and spicy, the Salt & Pepper Margarita is a no-brainer for a successful party starter – and a sure way to continue its success all night long!