This, we know: I’m kind of lousy at being Latino.
It’s okay. I can order food in a Mexican restaurant (unless the server asks questions.) I can blurt just enough on the soccer pitch to appear coherent. And my fluency doesn’t count in one particular room of the house: The kitchen.
I can make my own tortillas and guacamole. Beyond the language, I also struggle with the culture. My sister and I learned to make tamales by trial and error – in the early days, mostly error.
We got it down, though.
And she’s great about making cascarones on Easter and giving her kids ethnic names. One tradition neither of us carried on was that of Los Posadas. As kids, our families didn’t observe it, though.
Las Posadas refers to a nine-day observance in honor of Joseph and Mary and their journey to find a place to stay. It’s celebrated with dinner in a different home every night and traditional songs.
It’s nine days of festiveness and Mexican food, y’all. How was I not in on this from the start?
Better late than never. I’ve always gravitated toward la comida de mi gente (my people’s food) when times get tough. HERDEZ, makers of all sorts of Mexican deliciousness, gave me the opportunity to cook it up.
I asked Madison for suggestions for a Las Posadas feast.
She sent me 16 text messages with 16 recipes she found on the HERDEZ recipe website! (Kid, I’m one man. Let’s pare it down a bit.) She really liked the simply smoky corn chowder and Fiesta S’mores.
[check out more about los posadas here]
I’m famous for big intentions and time mismanagement in the kitchen. Dreams of a huge ethnic feast boiled down a bit, but nothing to shake a maraca at. We wound up with:
Guacamole for an appetizer (I used HERDEZ salsa verde)
Chicken fajitas with peppers and onions
Red guajillo pepper rice (I substituted HERDEZ tomatillo cooking sauce)
and Fiesta S’mores.
For a night, at least, we rocked out the heritage!
Pick your own dishes for las posadas (or any holiday meal) with suggestions from HERDEZ®. (click here).
The Share in the Magic of #MisPosadas contest lasts from December 7th – January 6th. Each week, a fill in the blank question relevant to the holiday will be posted for a fan to answer with a photo.
Dinner prepared by a personal chef for up to 4 people in your very own home!
$250 Gift Basket
$200 Gift Basket
Each week we’ll have a fill in the blank questions. Simply follow @Herdeztraditions, share your answer and photo and use the hashtag #MisPosadas. That’s it!
OK, you need to come make me this meal, because I just had a sandwich for lunch and am currently drooling over your guacamole and more! 😉
I’ll send you the shopping list, and when I get there, leave the cooking to me. Deal?
As a child I hated Mexican food so much so that one of the families I hung out with in my youth would always make a special trip elsewhere for me because they always, ALWAYS wanted Mexican and I would prefer to starve then choke down that food.(I was a brat then too what can I say…) This looks amazing and I’m happy to report my tastes have matured and I adore Mexican food now.
We had white friends like you. (Kidding! We loved white folk then. Still do.) It’s an acquired taste, perhaps, unless you’re my children, who could grip a chip and practically drink salsa before they could clap their hands.
Haha, ochy don’t make me laugh! That is pure awesomeness right there!
Lay down, Tiff. Take two enchiladas and call me in the morning.
don’t laugh – just rest.
Loved your post.
Thanks Michelle – I added your blog to my reading list.
I’ve added yours to mine as well. Love your humor and writing style.
Thank you – I just had to add you on the Pinterest too for all those ridiculous recipes you post
ooh, i love this tradition! i would love to start this next year!
anything that lets you eat at other peoples’ houses for consecutive nights has my attention. let me know when i should be there, beth.
Ooo. All these food pictures have made me hungry. I LOVE guacamole.
Hey Amber. All these food pictures made me hungry all over again. Guacamole is the bomb – but I don’t like to ruin it by mixing in salsa. I believe pure guac is the way Jesus intended.
Yes. I’ll take one order to go!
Chips and salsa are complimentary. Tell your friends.
I have never heard of Las Posadas before, but it sounds like a fun tradition!
I’ve been Hispanic all my life, and didn’t know (they don’t put it in the operator’s manual, apparently.)
Love Mexican food! We even have a Mexican restaurant in our town. It’s probably more Tex-Mex than true Mexican, but the flavours are good 🙂
It’s definitely my comfort food of choice, Lyn. Wonder what your local eatery is like. I’d give it a shot. Flavor rules.
And right next door, they have a desert place called “Churro” something or other 😀
Churros are God’s answer to my prayer for a portable dessert suitable for driving.
What about the dipping sauce?
The right churro needs no dipping sauce.
I started reading your post at Starbuck’s yesterday and didn’t finish. good thing or I would have been hungry instead of sipping a coffee. It does sound like a good tradition – do you have your next eight lined up? Keep us up to date. Have a Merry Christmas – Peace on Earth.
I wonder how often I get read in Starbucks, Clayton? That joint should offer chips and salsa to start.
I don’t have a blasted thing lined up, friend. I’m as new as this as you are. but anyway, Merry Christmas, amigo – so glad our worlds collided back in the day.
I’m naturally dark skinned and one of my nicknames growing up was José. Ironically, I love Mexican food. So perhaps in a previous life I was “of your people”? All of this is delicious. When you done at Janine’s you can come up here and we’ll party Mexican style in El’Cananad-Oh.
Jose! I was the coconut – brown on the outside, white on the inside. I consider you one of my people right here where you stand, Ericito.
Especially at the dinner table. I wonder what Mexican food is like in Canada, brother.
I wonder the same thing. I haven’t seen any. Though, I live in a very rural area, so there isn’t much of anything, let alone a Mexican restaurant. Next time we venture to the city, I’ll hunt one down and let you know.
I could SO handle not cooking for 8 nights (and so could my family)! 😜
Even if you cook for one, and get the other seven at someone else’s place – I feel like that’s a pretty good deal.
Las Posadas sounds like something I’d wanna do! I’d probably knock on your door a couple of times. Tamales? Enchiladas? Anything avocado? Wouldn’t want to miss that! Thank you for introducing me to this nice tradition. Tamara sounds latina enough, right? Also I can say “tengo mucho trabajo” fluently. Plus FELIZ NAVIDAD 🙂
I’m thinking about organizing one for next year, if I can get a bit of consistency in life going. You’d be welcome to come, Tamara. You could count on tamales.
Also, cheese enchiladas, with a fried egg on top (an option for the tamales, too.) It would be about time for me to observe the tradition.
If your cheese enchiladas are delicious, you could be named Svetlana and it would be latina enough! You need to just say “tenemos much comida!” (we have a lot of food!) and you’ll be golden.