Cinco de Mayo

This year Saturday and Cinco de Mayo are synonymous, making for the perfect day to celebrate…especially sense the Sunday that follows is generally workless and ready to nurse the inveritable Tequila remorse.

How we celebrate?

Scratch Margaritas and Mexican Shrimp Cocktails with a side of fresh tortilla chips.

Mexican Shrimp Cocktails-serves 4

1 pound fresh bay shrimp or spot prawns, depending on the size of crustacean you prefer, cooked or raw, peeled

1 ripe but firm avocado, chopped coarsely

2 medium tomatoes, chopped coarsely

! medium onion, chopped

1 jalapeno (the pepper should be nice and hot), use as much of it as you think you and your guests will like.

2-3 tablespoon chopped cilantro

juice of 2 limes (about 2-3 tablespoons)

1-2 tablespoon A-1 sauce

! cup chicken broth

1 cup Clamato juice

Cholula, Crystal or Tabasco Sauce.

If the shrimp or prawns are raw, bring 1 cup of chicken broth to a boil and toss the crustaceans in and cook until JUST cooked: about 3-4 mins for bay shrimp; 4-5 mins for spot prawns. Drain, reserving the liquid. Chill both the liquid and the shrimp in the refrigerator until cold (about 1/2-1 hour).

Prepare the rest of the ingredients, EXCEPT for the cilantro, and mix in a large bowl. Chill.

When all ingredients are nice and cold, mix all together, gently. Sprinkle with the cilantro and mix again, gently. Add salt to taste.

Serve in bowls with freshly fried tortilla chips, a wedge of lime for garnish and the offering of hot sauce of your choice.

To fry tortilla chips:

Take 12 corn tortillas (fresh made are the best), cut them into 8 triangles each.  Heat corn oil in a large deep pan over medium high heat being careful not to get it too HOT! If it begins to smoke, it is TOO HOT. Drop te triangles into the oil and turn occasionally with a slotted spoon until they are golden, drain on paper towels and salt generously. Serve.

NOTE: DO NOT leave the pot of oil, even for a minute during this process or you may have an oil fire on your hands. For the faint of heart, simply by high-quality tortilla chips….:)

Scratch Margaritas-8 servings

1 cup white, non-smokey tequila (I like Herradura silver)

! cup water

! cup freshly squeezed lime juice

3-4 tablespoon Agave syrup (basically to taste. Some like Margs sweet; some tart)

Mix the syrup into the concoction well and serve over LOTS of ice in a short glass, salt rim or no. OR shake on ice in a cocktail shaker and serve up, no ice.

Felices fiestas!