Many people think Cinco de Mayo is the celebration of Mexican independence, but really, Mexican Independence Day is celebrated on September 15th and 16th. So this year, celebrate with a Mexican style fiesta with fabulous Mexican cocktails and these traditional Mexican recipes.
Traditional Mexican Independence Day dishes and beverages
Days before the festivities of September 15th and 16th begin, street stalls are set up in the main plaza of Mexico City offering traditional antojitos or street foods. Items that are also common in the United States such as chalupas, quesadillas, sopes, tacos, and tostadas, are considered antojitos which are usually small cooked appetizers. Items maybe not so familiar which are also served are chicharron (fried pork rinds), gorditas (pasty filled with meat), and memelas (fried corn masa cakes topped with salsa, cheese, chicken, and a variety of other toppings). Antojitos are simple to make and will be a great addition to your Mexican fiesta.
Guacamole and chips is also eaten on Mexican Independence Day so you can make homemade guacamole and even homemade chips to serve as an appetizer with the antojitos. Try making guacamole in different flavors like mango, pomegranate, or mole.
A variety of main dishes are also typically eaten during the whole month of September in celebration of Mexican independence. Dishes made with mole poblano are usually eaten, like mole chicken. Mole is usually only eaten around festivals and holidays because it is so labor intensive. Another popular dish is chiles en nogada which is a similar concept to a chile relleno. Chiles en nogada is a poblano chile stuffed with ground beef, fruit, herbs, and spices then covered in a creamy walnut sauce. The final garnish is pomegranate seeds. The three colors of the Mexican flag are represented here, green for the chiles, the walnut sauce is white, and the pomegranate seeds are red so this is a very traditional dish eaten during the month of September in Mexico.
For beverages a ponche or punch is usually made. This is similar to sangria where they are both made with fruit. A ponche can be made with or without alcohol, with red or white wine or tequila being the base if made with alcohol. Use seasonal fruits for your ponche to get the best results.
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