Spring is a great time to throw a Mexican fiesta and enjoy fresh recipes that are full of flavor! A perfect evening with friends is hanging out on the deck, enjoying the weather and some fun company. I like to keep the décor simple and seasonal. Great woven placemats complement batik napkins and cobalt margarita glasses and pitchers. String lights and lanterns are a great way to set the mood.
In honor of Cinco de Mayo, I created some great recipes that are a twist on Mexican classics. These light and tasty dishes could easily be a weeknight supper, as well. They incorporate lots of fresh produce and still feel a tad decadent. Top it off with a twist on the classic margarita, a grapefruit version!
String lights / World Market / www.worldmarket.com / $17
Lantern / Inside Avenue / www.insideavenue.com / $86
Placemat / Pier One / www.pierone.com / $8
Margarita glass / Crate and Barrel / www.crateandbarrel.com / $10
Pitcher / Joss and Main / www.jossandmain.com / $40
Napkin / Juliska / www.juliska.com / $14
Margarita glass / Pier One / www.pierone.com / $8
Pitcher / Pier One / www.pierone.com / $30
Lantern / Smith and Hawken / www.target.com / $25
Napkin set / Pier One / www.pierone.com / $20
Placemat / Deborah Rhodes / www.barneys.com / $28
String lights / Pottery Barn / www.potterybarn.com / $40
String lights / Lamps Plus / www.lampsplus.com / $20
Lantern / Williams Sonoma / www.williamssonoma.com / $195
Margarita glass / Pier One / www.pierone.com / $10
Napkin set / PCH / www.zincdoor.com / $38
String lights / Restoration Hardware / www.restorationhardware.com / $33
Serving Size: 8
4 ripe avocados, diced
3 large tomatoes, diced
10 green onions, thinly sliced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon of fresh cilantro, chopped
1 large can of black olives, drained and thinly sliced
1 large can of sliced mushrooms, drained
2 small cans of diced green chilis, drained
⅓ cup of pickled jalapeños, diced
¼ cup of apple cider vinegar
¼ cup of vegetable oil
salt and pepper to taste
Combine all of the diced vegetables in a large bowl.
In a small bowl, whisk together oil and vinegar with garlic and cilantro.
Add salt and pepper to the vinaigrette.
Top the salsa with the vinaigrette and put it in the refrigerator to marinate.
Use a slotted spoon to ladle the salsa into the serving dish.
Serve with your favorite tortilla chips.
Black Bean Soup
Serving Size: 8
2 cans of black beans
1 box of vegetable stock
1 red onion
2 bell peppers
2 cloves of garlic
2 teaspoons of chili powder
2 teaspoons of cumin
1 cup of finely grated extra sharp cheddar cheese
Chop the onion, pepper, and garlic.
Sauté the vegetables in a large, deep pan with olive oil until the onion is translucent.
Add the vegetable broth, black beans, chili powder, and cumin.
Let the soup cook on medium for 20 minutes, stirring frequently.
Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish it with cheddar, sour cream, and cilantro.
Serving Size: 8 Enchiladas
8 whole-wheat tortillas
2 small zucchini
2 small yellow squash
2 poblano peppers
1 large red onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon of olive oil
2 cans of green enchilada sauce
2 cups of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon chili powder
Chop the zucchini, squash, peppers, and onion into bite-sized pieces.
Mince the garlic.
Sauté the vegetables in garlic and oil until they are tender.
Add the chili powder and mix well.
Spread a thin layer of enchilada sauce in a medium baking pan.
Fill each tortilla with the mix and line them up in the pan.
Top the dish with enchilada sauce and cheddar.
Bake the enchiladas in a 350-degree oven for 20 minutes.
Garnish them with sour cream and serve.
Serving Size: 4
1 quart of ruby red grapefruit juice
4 ounces Cointreau
8 ounces gold Patron tequila
Pour the ingredients into a shaker.
Shake ingredients with ice.
Strain into four frosted margarita glasses.
Garnish with an orange twist.