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Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with recipes for all generations

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Just in time for Cinco de Mayo, the Muy Bueno cookbook offers recipes for all generations. A Cinco de Mayo party is a fun way to celebrate the foods your family and friends will enjoy.

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Cinco de Mayo, the fifth of May, celebrates Mexico's victory over France at the Battle of Puebla in 1862 during the Franco-Mexican War. Although the day isn't a major celebration in Mexico, Cinco de Mayo is widely celebrated in the United States

Many families celebrate the day with parades, parties, festivities and Mexican foods. Nearly all Mexican restaurants in the U.S. offer Cinco de Mayo specials.

Evangelina and her daughters Yvette and Veronica started the Muy Bueno blog in 2010. They wanted to honor the memory of Evangelina's mother, Jesusita Mendias-Soza, and to preserve their family recipes.

The cookbook offers over 100 recipes: traditional old-world northern Mexican recipes from Jesusita’s kitchen; comforting south of the border home-style dishes from Evangelina; and innovative Latin fusion recipes from Yvette and Veronica.

Muy Bueno shares these great recipes with us to help your Cinco de Mayo celebration sparkle from start to finish.

Chicken Mole

Chicken
4½ cups water
2 teaspoons salt
1 small onion, quartered
1 to 2 pounds chicken breasts
1 bay leaf

Mole Sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ bolillo (substitute small French roll), cut into 1-inch pieces
2 dried ancho chiles, stemmed, seeded, and diced
2 California chile pods, stemmed, seeded, diced
1 large or 2 small tomatillos, husks removed, rinsed, and chopped
1 tomato, chopped
1 teaspoon sesame seeds, plus more for garnish
3¾ cups chicken broth (reserved from boiled chicken), divided
2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
1.5 ounces Mexican chocolate (recommend Nestle-Abuelita), coarsely chopped
2 teaspoons cocoa powder
3 tablespoons mole paste (recommend Doña Maria)
2 teaspoons salt

In a large pot, heat water, salt, onion, chicken, and bay leaf. Once it starts to boil, lower the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes. Transfer chicken to plate to cool off, and then shred. Discard bay leaf. Reserve broth and onion.

Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, bolillo, chiles, tomatillos, tomato, and sesame seeds and sauté for 10 minutes, until soft. Pour half the broth and boiled onion into a blender and add half the sautéed ingredients.

Add peanut butter, chocolate pieces, cocoa powder, mole paste, and salt and blend until very smooth. Transfer the sauce to a large skillet. Pour the other half of the broth and sautéed ingredients into blender. Puree and add to the mixture in the large skillet. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add 2 cups of the shredded chicken and stir until chicken is covered with the sauce. Lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring continuously to keep it from sticking to skillet. Plate some mole on a serving plate and toss a handful of sesame seeds on top for garnish.

Mexican Shrimp Cocktail

½ cup ketchup
1½ cups vegetable juice (recommend V8)
1 to 2 tablespoons horseradish (add more or less according to spicy tolerance)
Juice of 2 limes
½ teaspoon bottled hot sauce
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
¼ cup finely chopped red onion
¼ cup chopped cilantro
1 pound small shrimp, shelled, deveined, and cooked
1 avocado, pitted, peeled, and finely diced
Saltine crackers or tortilla chips, for serving

Stir together the ketchup, vegetable juice, horseradish, lime juice, hot sauce, and garlic powder until well blended. Taste and add more horseradish or hot sauce if you would like it spicier.

Add the onion, cilantro, and shrimp and mix well. Gently stir in the avocado. Cover and refrigerate 2 to 3 hours. Serve in 4-ounce glasses with saltine crackers or tortilla chips.

Mexican Fruit Sangria

2 bottles of red wine (recommend Rioja)
2 cups brandy
1 cup fresh orange juice
1 orange, sliced
1 lemon, sliced
1 lime, sliced
1 apple, cored and cut into thin wedges
1 pear, cored and cut into thin wedges
1 (750-ml) bottle club soda, chilled
Ice

Combine the wine, brandy, orange juice, and fruit in a large container or glass pitcher. Cover and chill completely, at least 1 to 2 hours or overnight. Add soda to mixture when ready to serve. Serve with ice and some of the fruit.

Ham and Avocado Torta

4 bolillos (oval Mexican sandwich rolls) or other sandwich rolls
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
4 to 8 thin slices deli ham
1 large avocado, pitted, peeled, and sliced
1 tomato, sliced
Romaine lettuce
4 jalapeños peppers (optional)

Slice the bolillos in half lengthwise, not cutting all the way through. Open the rolls and spread about 1 tablespoon of mayonnaise on the inside of each. On each roll, place 1 to 2 slices of ham, 1 slice of cheese, some avocado and tomato slices, and lettuce. Serve with a fresh jalapeño.

Prickly Pear Frozen Margarita

4 prickly pears, peeled and sliced
¼ cup water
3½ cups crushed ice
3 ounces freshly squeezed lime juice
3 ounces frozen limeade
6 ounces Silver Tequila
4½ ounces Triple Sec
3 tablespoons simple syrup (page 105)
Star fruit slices or lime wedges and coarse salt for garnish

In a blender, blend prickly pears with water to make a puree. Strain into a bowl and discard seeds. Place crushed ice in a blender. Add prickly pear puree, lime juice, limeade, tequila, triple sec, and simple syrup; cover and pulse ingredients.

Garnish the edges of 6 margarita glasses with coarse salt. Pour pear mixture into the glasses; add a star fruit slice or a lime wedge to each glass for a garnish and serve immediately.

Whether your Cinco de Mayo celebration is a party for two or a group event, enjoy these recipes from the Muy Bueno cookbook. Visit the blog for more recipes and information about ordering the cookbook.

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