ALDI Chef’s Corner: Fiesta!

April 22, 2016 – Hello all, Chef Michelle from the ALDI Test Kitchen here!

It’s that time of the year again, the sun is shining, the birds are chirping and the beauty of spring is in full bloom. Not to mention one of my favorite holidays is just around the corner: Cinco de Mayo! Coming from a Mexican household, I love a good fiesta. Although Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico’s main celebrated Independence Day, it is a top contender and it is also widely celebrated in America. El Grito de Dolores, which is considered the beginning of the Mexico War of Independence, is September 16th. Mark that on your calendar ASAP as an additional day to celebrate fiesta-style and indulge in a margarita.

IMG_7874I’ve been in the heart of Mexico during an Independence Day and would love to share how vibrant and loving it felt to be there with a few tips and tricks to enhance your celebration.  Just as the Mexican culture is full of life, so should a fiesta because come on IT’S A PARTY! Street vendors swarm the squares and plazas with indulgent treats while musicians and artists perform on stage through the night until fireworks fill the air. Pops of color should be everywhere, bringing the Mexican culture into your casa. If you think that’s hard to do, don’t fret because I’m here to help make the fiesta fun and festive. Plus, I’ll recommend my go-to recipes from the ALDI Test KitchenTeam.

Bag It!IMG_7877_Enhanced
Serve drinks in plastic bags, pop a neon straw in each bag, wrap it up with a rubber band and VOILA! Your kids will love it! Or, pour your cocktail concoctions into them.

Jiggle It!
Serve mini gelatin molds on parchment paper. It’s different, yes, but in Mexico, street vendors sell gelatin as a grab-and-eat sweet snack. Bring the culture into your home.

Cup It!IMG_7883_Enhanced
Displaying your hors d’oeuvres and salads in clear plastic tumblers is a great way to show off their bright colors and provide perfect portions for your guests:

    • Fruit and vegetables with wedges of lime and a dash of salt.
    • Try a classic take on Mexican corn-on-the-cob with our  Eloté Style Corn Bake recipe.
    • Crank up classic ceviche with cranberries. Yumm…
    •  Visit here for even more dip ideas. We say if it fits in a cup, DO IT!

Shred It!
Turn to Chef Alyssa’s Pork Carnitas Quesadillas recipe, or just serve the pork for a taco bar. I used this recipe for my daughter’s fiesta-themed first birthday, and my guests loved it!

I encourage you to celebrate this Cinco de Mayo with an outlandish fiesta and share your treats with us in the comments below!

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