It's no secret that Cinco de Mayo is celebrated quite enthusiastically in the United States, which probably goes to show how much we love any excuse to get together and enjoy some good food and drinks. So, to help you prepare for the best Cinco de Mayo party on the block, we here at Rogue thought it would be prudent to give you a rundown of how you can make the whole day noteworthy this year.
Desayuno = Breakfast
For those that aren’t familiar with huevos rancheros, you are truly missing out on a flavor experience. Traditionally made with beans, tomatoes and onions, tostadas and fried eggs, this breakfast will absolutely fill you up, is full of flavor as well as deep colors that are a feast for the eyes, too. The great thing about this dish is that it is adaptable to your level of spiciness and you can add or subtract meats, vegetables and sauces to your heart's content.
Another great recipe that isn’t as well known, but just as tasty is a mollete or open-faced breakfast sandwich. This is usually made with a baguette-style bread called bolillo, that is filled with refried beans, cheese and salsa, and then baked until toasted and warm.
What would breakfast be without a great cup of joe? One of the best in the country as well as around the world is café de olla. Historically this is a coffee made in a clay pot with spices to give it a bold flavor and a great start to any morning. A key spice that is infused into the coffee is cinnamon, which is a perfect match with a Rogue Cinnamon Pouch to get your morning started off on the right note.
Desalmuerzo = Brunch
Because this is going to be a long day, you’re going to need your strength, so dive right into a batch of papas con chorizo in tortillas. There isn’t much better than diced potatoes and onions fried up with Mexican chorizo with a little bit of avocado on the side for flavor. This is a great dish if you happened to have skipped breakfast due to the fact that you were so busy setting up decorations for your party.
Keep another tube of chorizo on hand for cazuela de huevos con chorizo or a scrambled egg chorizo casserole that is easy to bake and can feed a small army of primos (cousins) there to help you celebrate. Made with lots of eggs and a mix of potatoes, onions, cheese, peppers and jalapeños, this stunner is quick and easy, as well as richly flavored.
Don’t forget to have a refreshing cup of horchata to finish off your brunch. This traditional rice and almond drink is served cold and is remarkably creamy and slightly sweet. We would also recommend starting brunch off with Rogue Berry Tablets to provide a great rush of flavor and nicotine for your late morning enjoyment.
Almuerozo = Lunch
When you’re ready to take a break, a simple go-to item that everyone’s familiar with is the quesadilla. These can be as straightforward as some good cheese between tortillas and grilled up in a pan, or for some variety, add chicken, beef or pork to mingle with the cheese, guacamole, crema and salsa to make it a real meal.
To serve alongside the quesadillas, whip up a batch of sopa de frijol. It is full of wonderfully earthy flavors of beans and herbs, and is just begging for a big spoon to scoop it up with. Top it was some authentic queso fresco, cilantro and serrano peppers and you have a lunch fit for a king.
Be sure to cleanse your palate with a refreshing cóctel paloma made with a fine tequila and tangy grapefruit juice. We know it’s a little early to start drinking, but this cocktail is so full of fresh flavors and complements the rich flavors of these other lunch menu items. And, once you’ve filled up on lunch, keep the fruity flavor going with the sweet, long-lasting taste of Rogue Fruit Gum.
Bocadillo de la Tarde = Afternoon Snack
Time stops for no one, and the same can be said for hunger. To stave off the pains in the afternoon, try a curious and colorful recipe called manzanas locas. For any of you that took high school Spanish, you know that means crazy apples. Most recipes on the internet won’t hold back on the spicy ingredients, but you can dial that up or down depending on your tolerance level. Pair this up with a Rogue Apple Pouch to make sure you keep the experience and taste flowing for a long time.
For everyone who’s ready for potato cakes done Mexican style, try a stack of tortitas de papa y queso. There isn’t much better than fried smashed potatoes with plenty of cheese and coated in breadcrumbs. Top those with crema and you’ll have friends lined up around the block to plate up one of these.
Sometimes thought of as a vacationer’s cocktail, the carajillo is a very simple drink of espresso and a special liquor, which can be served either hot or over ice and chilled. It’s an awesome pick-me-up to get you ready for the best part of the day… the evening party!
Cena = Dinner
The fiesta doesn’t have to start in the evening, but most of your guests will be ready to get the celebration started after work hours are over. So, to treat them to an unforgettable dinner starting with carnitas. Most often made with pork and seasoned to be a combo of sweet and spicy, then topped with fresh salsa and grilled fruit, your friends won’t know what hit them. Plus, pairing this with the smooth release of Rogue Citrus Lozenges will make sure the party host is ready to celebrate.
For the two in a one-two punch, have plenty of barbacoa de rez marinated and going in batches off the grill. And, because both these meats can be served in tortillas (corn and/or flour), or over rice in a less traditional but savory bowl-style, you can lay everything out buffet style so everyone can create build their plates exactly how they’d like, and then go back for seconds!
Don’t disappoint your biggest fans by leaving out the elotes Mexicanos or Mexican sweet corn. This easy recipe will be everyone’s favorite, with the corn grilled in the husks, then covered, and we truly mean covered, with mayo, queso cotija and chili powder. We’ll warn you right now that these may fill your friends up faster than the meats, so have extra on hand for when you run out the first time.
Bebidas = Drinks
It almost goes without saying that cervezas are a staple. These by no means have to be brand names out of Mexico, in fact, you may want to have lots of variety on hand so no one goes home disappointed. Make sure to have lots of lemon and lime wedges for those who love a little citrus.
Not to be too cliche, but margaritas are a must have, especially for the ladies. Whether you make them the more traditional way with tequila, triple sec and lime, or sweeten them up with simple syrup and fruit juices, one thing is for sure, do it up in a pitcher so someone doesn’t have to play bartender and miss out on all the fun. Also enjoy a Rogue Mango Pouch as you're sipping on your margarita to keep the fruity notes going on and on.
For those in the crowd that are ready for a spicy cerveza, it’s time to introduce them to the michelada. If a bloody mary and a margarita beer got together, this is what you’d get. Made with a good Mexican beer, tomato and lime juices, hot sauce and a glass rimmed with anything from cajun seasons to chili powder and celery salt. This is a savory flair no one will soon forget.
Postres Dulces = Sweet Deserts
To keep things simple, deserts that are easy to grab are ideal. One of those that will delectable treats is the dulce de leche carmel candies. This is one item on your menu that you can either choose to make from scratch or buy at the store. Truly this isn’t as difficult or scary to make as you might think, so look up a few recipes, watch a couple videos and try a batch or two before the big night, just to be sure.
You absolutely, positively cannot throw a Cinco de Mayo party without churros. You may be tempted to take the easy route and buy them, but the work to do them at home will impress all your guests, and they can be made a little ahead of time and kept in a low-temp oven. Add a side of warm chocolate sauce to dip in, and you may never convince them to leave. But you can keep Rogue Mix Packs close at hand to make sure you’re ready for whatever comes your way.
Far from traditional, but will be the centerpiece of your dessert display can be white chocolate dipped strawberries with green sprinkles. As a true display of the green, white and red of the Mexican flag, dip strawberries about three quarters of the way into melted white chocolate, and then dip that chocolate into green sprinkles about a third of the way up and ahí vas (there you go), delicious desserts dedicated to the country’s colors.
Decoraciones = Decorations
Speaking as experienced individuals at party and theme decorations, you can’t have too much when it comes to Cinco de Mayo celebrations. Over the top is probably just enough and colors are the name of the game. Luckily, it is easy to find Mexican markets and specialty shops that will carry a wide range of streamers, platters, ornaments and balloons to cover your house or backyard in bright, festive trimmings. You can also go all out and dress to the nines in a sombrero and bright colored poncho, but that’s totally up to you.
Centerpieces don’t have to be complicated at all; bowls of chips with red and green salsas and guacamole will never disappoint. Or miniature maracas and sombreros that your guests can take home are festive and fun. Some shops even sell pequeña piñatas that you can fill with Mexican candies.
Fiesta Rogue Style
In this great melting pot of the U.S., it is great to know that a Cinco de Mayo party can be celebrated by everyone. Sort of like St. Patrick’s Day or Mardi Gras, this day is more about getting together with friends and family to have a great time.
Plus, don’t put too much stress into throwing an epic celebration; even if all you can pull together are a couple of friends, a couple of beers and some mariachi music over the stereo, it’ll be perfect. And we here at Rogue have your back to make this day and every other one are a fiesta unto itself.