Feliz Cinco de Mayo! What is considered a relatively minor day in Mexico (commemorating the Mexican army's 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War) has evolved into a much larger celebration of Mexican culture and heritage here in the United States.
I am a huge fan of Mexican cuisine and it's a mere coincidence that I had Mexican for lunch today. I was in Patterson Park for the Kinetic Sculpture Race so I decided to take advantage of being in Baltimore's Hispanic Corridor and went to La Sirenita for lunch. I had a great ceviche tostada and cheese sopes, but it was the pumpkin flower quesadilla that was the star of the meal. It had layers of flavor ranging from the corn tortillas and Mexican crema to the pumpkin flowers which tasted like they had been marinated for hours. I decided to forgo beer and cocktails at the restaurant and opted to make homemade Palomas for me and a couple friends when I got back home.
According to my sources¹, the Paloma cocktail, not the margarita, is the most popular tequila based cocktail in Mexico. I can definitely see why. The Paloma is light, refreshing and slightly more balanced than a margarita. I'm most definitely a fan.
1. Baltimore Magazine, Bon Appetit and Wikipedia
- Course Sea Salt
- 1 lime
- 1 shot tequila
- Grapefruit soda (such as Jarritos, Squirt or Fresca)
- Grapefruit wedge
Pour some course sea salt on a small plate. Rub the rim of a glass with lime and dip in salt. Fill glass with ice. Add juice from one lime and a dash of sea salt. Stir in 1 shot of tequila and top with grapefruit soda, roughly 1/4 cup. Garnish with grapefruit wedge.