Thinking Ahead to Cinco de Mayo…

I realize that there are likely many people of the USA (and the rest of the world) who don’t recognize this Mexican holiday called Cinco de Mayo. Since I’m located in Southern California, I observe this holiday as very much celebrated- if anything- as an excuse to party, drink margaritas, and consume exhorbitant amounts of chips and guacamole.

Cinco de Mayo is not an American holiday, but it’s celebrated on a much larger scale in the U.S. than it is in Mexico. Cinco de Mayo is the celebration of the courage of the Mexican people during the battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862 where 4,500 Mexican soldiers defeated the Mexican traitors and French army of 6,500 at Puebla, Mexico. More Cinco history here, if interested.

We take part in the celebrations every year, and we usually host a Cinco bash. Here are some of our favorite Mexican food recipes…

I’ll begin with the most important- drinks! We served these at last year’s Cinco party: Spotted Gecko Margaritas. Spotted because of added kiwi, these margies also have mango and pineapple in them. They were a HUGE hit at our party and we ended up running out. They’ve gotten excellent reviews from others too.

These Flank Steak Tacos are wonderful too- a simple rub, steak grilled, added tomatoes, peppers and onions with desired condiments.

If you’re daring enough to make fish tacos (and you should be because they’re damn good), try these San Diego Style Fish Tacos. We converted a few East Coast fish-taco-doubters last summer with this recipe. They were weary of trying them but they loved them in the end.

These Chipotle- Glazed Vegetable Kebabs make a wonderful side to a Mexican main dish.

The best part… Margarita Cake! This lemony cake is topped with a tequila-lime glaze. It’s an amazing, different dessert. I’m not a fan of tequila at all and I loved it. It was extremely well-received by our guests. I overheard mumblings of “wow, this is great!” and “what is this? it’s delicious!”

So whether or not you will be celebrating Cinco de Mayo this year, at least this holiday gives you an excuse to plan a great Mexican meal on May 5th. Hasta manana!

Leave a Comment

38 Responses to “Thinking Ahead to Cinco de Mayo…”

  1. 1

    taste memory — April 21, 2008 @ 1:04 PM

    you are definitely thinking ahead with some seriously savory recipes!

    Love that margarita cake – the top part with that glazy look is making me hungry!

  2. 2

    Rosie — April 21, 2008 @ 1:36 PM

    Everything looks stunning a feast fit for Cinco de Mayo.

    I really love those Chipotle- Glazed Vegetable Kebabs mmmmmm

    Rosie x

  3. 3

    Elle — April 21, 2008 @ 2:14 PM

    Great inspiration! Add me to the East coast fish taco lovers. Not very easy to find around here, so I had to start making them at home. SO good. Hmmm, maybe we’ll host a party this year!

  4. 4

    Romina — April 21, 2008 @ 2:38 PM

    That margarita cake looks DELICIOUS!!

  5. 5

    Nicole — April 21, 2008 @ 4:08 PM

    You are killing me Lori! I have every intention of starting a “diet”… I hate that word… or an adjustment in what I eat for a few weeks and you hit me with this! I am still full from the feast I made last night and yet I want to eat the whole bowl of quacamole you have there. And 4 ripe avocados sit on my counter!! I have had issues finding good fish tacos any more too. I guess I have to start doing them at home. (Sorry for the novel!)

  6. 6

    HoneyB — April 21, 2008 @ 4:59 PM

    I am really thinking I need to try some fish tacos. They sound good! My only obstacle is the Grumpster. He pouts like a baby when I make anything remotely Mexican. What a party pooper!

  7. 7

    CookiePie — April 21, 2008 @ 6:12 PM

    Feliz cinco de mayo! These dishes look incredible – I would like one of each, por favor, maybe 2 of the margaritas! :) And the cake looks fabulous – I love the lime slices.

  8. 8

    Peter M — April 21, 2008 @ 7:04 PM

    Nothing much of Cico de Mayo is made up here but I wish it was.

    I’ll now clean those sardines in exchange for these fixins’…deal?

  9. 9

    Josie — April 21, 2008 @ 7:08 PM

    I want to come next year!!! Cinco de Mayo 2009- HERE I COME :) (we can go shoe shopping afterwards!)

  10. 10

    Brilynn — April 21, 2008 @ 8:45 PM

    Wow! That looks awesome, I definitely need to start celebrating cinco de mayo!

  11. 11

    Noble pig — April 21, 2008 @ 8:52 PM

    I will be celebrating Cinco de Mayo as well. You can take the girl out of Southern California but you can’t take Southern California out of the girl.

  12. 12

    Grace — April 21, 2008 @ 9:17 PM

    cinco de mayo might just be my favorite holiday. last year my friends and i went to an all-you-can-eat lunch buffet at a local mexican restaurant. to say we pigged out would be an understatement. we literally sat at the table for about an hour after finishing because we couldn’t move. at one point i was afraid we would have to be rolled out of the restaurant like violet on willy wonka and the chocolate factory.
    ah, good memories. :)

  13. 13

    dobetter — April 21, 2008 @ 9:38 PM

    You have got the touch for margaritas! I love the way your spotted margaritas look. And the cake is TDF! Fun Cinco de Mayo post.

  14. 14

    Susan from Food Blogga — April 21, 2008 @ 9:46 PM

    Margarita cake?! Are you kidding me? How have I not heard of this yet? It’s sensational!

  15. 15

    Deborah — April 21, 2008 @ 9:53 PM

    Fish tacos are one of my favorite things. Yum! I say I celebrate Cinco de Mayo just for an excuse to make a bunch of Mexican food.

  16. 16

    ali — April 21, 2008 @ 11:33 PM

    RecipeGirl, So many delicious inspirations! I am such a fan of the San Diego-style fish tacos. I’m all about the grease … none of this grilled fish business.

    the margaritas look amazing.

  17. 17

    VeggieGirl — April 22, 2008 @ 12:25 AM

    Wow, you really ARE thinking ahead, haha!! Always good to plan ahead of fun holidays though :0)

    That Margarita cake looks ESPECIALLY luscious and festive – yum!!

  18. 18

    Tartelette — April 22, 2008 @ 12:30 AM

    What a great spread! Steak taco, cake and a margarita for me please!!

  19. 19

    Kevin — April 22, 2008 @ 1:32 AM

    What a feast of Mexican cuisine. It all looks so tasty!

  20. 20

    Daziano — April 22, 2008 @ 2:03 AM

    I must confess I’m not a big fan of Mexican food, but your ideas sound GREAT!

  21. 21

    Obsessive Foodie or Food Addict....You Decide — April 22, 2008 @ 2:18 AM

    Fish tacos are my absolute favorite and I love chips and guacamole…..those margaritas look so good!!!!! I am hungry now.

  22. 22

    Half Baked — April 22, 2008 @ 2:51 AM

    I want to party with you on Cinco de Mayo! Your food looks amazing. Slide on of those margarita’s my way;)

  23. 23

    Nina's Kitchen (Nina Timm) — April 22, 2008 @ 3:28 AM

    What a great feast you had. Everything looks fresh and flavorful and those margaritas, mmmmmmm

  24. 24

    cook eat FRET — April 22, 2008 @ 4:27 AM

    i just read down about 5 posts and WOW. just WOW.
    you’re busy cooking! all great stuff…

    the mexican food looks beautiful. and i really do love fish tacos.

  25. 25

    diva — April 22, 2008 @ 7:53 AM

    margerita cake?! how lovely..sounds like a great spring dessert to me. thanks, this is amazing. x

  26. 26

    Medena — April 22, 2008 @ 12:40 PM

    Wow on everything!!! Margarita anything for me! Certainly saving those recipes, thanks!

  27. 27

    Proud Italian Cook — April 22, 2008 @ 2:08 PM

    Can I come to your party??? I want to taste it all!!

  28. 28

    Neen — April 22, 2008 @ 3:05 PM

    Margarita cake? That’s hysterical! You’re so creative!

  29. 29

    Cookie baker Lynn — April 22, 2008 @ 3:31 PM

    Wow, it all looks wonderful! Can I drop in and have a margarita?

  30. 30

    Mike of Mike's Table — April 22, 2008 @ 5:13 PM

    This is quite a collection that has me craving Mexican. They all look excellent and like a great twist on familiar favorites

  31. 31

    Jeff — April 22, 2008 @ 5:16 PM

    Looks like an amazing cinco de mayo feast.

  32. 32

    Jenny — April 22, 2008 @ 5:58 PM

    Wow, what a star line up for Cinco de Mayo! My husband just got me into fish tacos, I swore I’d never like them, but he proved me wrong.

    I’ll take one of everything! Very nice Lori!

  33. 33

    Mary Coleman — April 22, 2008 @ 8:32 PM

    I am so ready for this! We’ll be at the beach and this will be perfect for our celebration/birthday party for Groom!

  34. 34

    Lady M — April 22, 2008 @ 8:37 PM


    You are making me want to have a Cinco de Mayo fiesta at my house. We don’t celebrate it all that much…

    Thanks for sharing with us!


  35. 35

    Indigo — April 22, 2008 @ 8:57 PM

    I love excuses to celebrate! Definitely want to try a fish taco now, and that cake looks gorgeous…

  36. 36

    Jessy and her dog Winnie — April 23, 2008 @ 12:59 AM

    That margarite cake looks so yummy!

  37. 37

    Cathie — April 26, 2008 @ 11:01 PM

    I love Ina as well, so I do a lot of her recipes. The tri-berry muffins look great.
    I was thinking after the organge cake that a margarita cake would be sensational, and then I looked on your blog and you had one!!!

  38. 38

    Rachelle — June 6, 2008 @ 8:18 PM

    Thank you!! I made those fish tacos (with another yummy sauce) but lost the recipe/website. I just stumbled apon it here. I love fish tacos now (from our great taco shops here!), but wouldnt even think about them before.