I’ve always loved Cinco de Mayo. In my hometown, New York City, May 5th is at a point in early spring when we’re absolutely sure there’s no turning back. So the weather’s beautiful and Mexican food and margaritas: What could be better? But, over the last few years, I’ve become aware of how narrowly — and through our own lens — we Americans tend to celebrate holidays like Cinco de Mayo and Chinese New Year.
I mean, nachos for Cinco de Mayo?
Don’t get me wrong, nachos are delicious and I have no doubt many folks from Mexico agree, but they are not Mexican food. If you’re celebrating Cinco de Mayo this year — or, really, any time you’re next craving Mexican food — I hope you’ll consider delving a little deeper into Mexican cuisine. Our favorite Mexican food and cooking blogs can help.
Leslie of La Cocina de Leslie was born and raised in California eating the food of her grandparents, who were from the states of Sonora and Chihuahua in Mexico. So she pretty much thought that she had Mexican cooking down — until she moved to the small town in Mexico where her husband was raised. Leslie has lived there for over 16 years now and, among other things, blogs her favorite Mexican recipes from there, some traditional, some regional, and others newfangled.
We still love Leslie’s Tostadas that were featured in our round up of Mexican dinner recipes that aren’t tacos, and I can’t thank her enough for introducing me to a new-to-me Mexican sausage in her recipe for Longaniza Pineapple Tacos that was featured in one of our weekly meal plans. Next up, I’m deciding between her recipes for Garlic Shrimp or Camarones a la Mexicana (pictured). Decisions, decisions.
I’ve been a longtime fan of Muy Bueno and Yvette’s cooking. Not only are her recipes fabulous, but they come from the heart. See, the native Texan started cooking seriously when she realized that if she didn’t, her cultural heritage, which was passed to her by her mother and grandmother, would fade. Her passion for Mexican food and culture and love of family come through in every bite — and not just because her mother sometimes co-writes recipes with her.
We featured Yvette’s Huevos Rancheros with Chorizo Refried Black Beans in last year’s collection of Cinco de Mayo recipes. This year, I’m eyeing Slow Cooker Pork Tinga Flautas (pictured) and, of course, these gorgeous Prickly Pear Margaritas.
Pati Jinich is a venerable Mexican food expert. The Mexican born and raised host of the Emmy and James Beard award nominated PBS show, Pati’s Mexican Table, traded in a career as a political analyst to focus on her Mexican culinary endeavors. From teaching friends about Mexican cooking to landing a television series and publishing cookbooks, this woman has done it all. She’s also eaten and cooked it all, which you can tell from her comprehensive site.
You can explore the recipes on her blog, but I love looking through the TV show recipes since they are organized by theme and you learn so much more that way! No matter how you find recipes, be sure to check these out: Big Brunch Enchiladas (pictured) and Oreos Conchas. Because OMG.
At Mexico in My Kitchen, Mely Martinez shares traditional home-style meals from across México. She focuses on the foods of places she’s lived in her home country and, lucky for us, there are many: 27 in all, giving us a taste of many different regions of the country. The teacher’s love of cooking comes from her time spent growing and picking vegetables on a farm with her grandparents and helping with tasks like grinding corn to make masa for what were surely the most deliciously fresh tortillas ever. (Want one.)
Now living in the United States, Mely continues her own traditional of sharing regional home cooking with us, showcasing its glorious simplicity with recipes including Chorizo Potato Crispy Tacos (a favorite of mine!) and Three Pepper Stew (pictured).
So, Maura of The Other Side of the Tortilla is not from Mexico, isn’t of Mexican descent, and wasn’t raised in a home with Mexican culture, yet I’ve included her here. Here’s why: She’s a dedicated student of Mexican food, a great, professional writer, and a lovely food photographer. Most important of all, Maura shares recipes that are manageable for a busy cook to recreate at home.
Maura is married to a Mexican man and has traveled her husband’s native county extensively, which explains the restaurant recommendations she offers on her site, too, which I love. Because, yes please to more travel around Mexico. Plus, I love Maura’s recipe for Sopa de fideo, a soup I fell in love with several years ago. She also taught me how to make Mangonadas. Then, she one upped herself and made Mangonada Popsicles, a smart, fun, easy twist on a classic Mexican recipe — and the perfect example of why I love her blog.
What’s Cooking Mexico isn’t a recipe blog (though it offers a few), but I’m including it here because of how excited Ben Herrera manages to make me about Mexico and Mexican food. Every time I visit, I’m ready to board a plane. Ben’s discoveries focus primarily on Mexico City, one of my favorite cities in the world and Ben’s hometown, but they still manages to give you a sense of the breadth of flavor and color that Mexican cuisine offers. Perhaps because Ben clearly knows it well and loves it so much.
If you think a taco is something with a hard shell always piled high with salsa, sour cream, iceberg lettuce, and plain diced tomatoes, start with his piece on the anatomy of a taco. Also, if you’re a Spanish speaker/reader, visit Ben’s Spanish-language site Mexico Sabroso.
While all of us at Cool Mom Eats are working hard to make sure that we share the work of all kinds of fantastic food bloggers who are both experts in their field or creating excellent food content but not (yet) best-selling authors or household names, it’s hard to know absolutely everyone. We’re always open to your own favorites, so drop us a line anytime or hit us up on Twitter or Instagram with suggestions.