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May 7, 2007 11:53 AM

Cinco de Mayo report (with pics)

Since the thread linked below had so many good ideas, including my favorite salsa of the night, Eat Nopal's Roasted Tomatillo, Garlic, Ancho & Arbol Salsa, I thought I'd report on how it turned out (and hopefully get the other CHs to report on what they brought!)

There were 16 of us and WOW what a great meal we had with everybody contributing. It really was a delicious menu, with friends also bringing wonderful Spanish wines and making margaritas to accompany this feast. Great company and great food - what more could you ask for.

Menu with linked recipes:

Picadillo empanadas with cilantro crema (crema mixed with sour cream, cilantro, lime juice, and some Penzey's Adobo seasoning).
Guacamole, chips, and 3 salsas - salsa borracha ("drunken") with guajillos, tequila, onion, and garlic ; roasted jalapeno and tomato; and Eat Nopal's Roasted Tomatillo, Garlic, Ancho & Arbol Salsa

Tequila-cured gravlax
Steak, avocado, and salsa verde tostaditas
Sauteed Shrimp in Latin Citrus Sauce
Pork, beef, and chicken tamales
Chile colorado
Slow-roasted Yucatan pork
Corn and flour tortillas/queso fresco/cilantro/crema
Chili Rellenos. Note to self: Remember to take toothpicks out BEFORE you serve it to your guests ; ). Rick Bayless
Mexican rice, ceviche, chicken, and machaca
Topolo Caesar salad with green chile, lime, cilantro and queso anejo - from Rick Bayless' "Mexican Kitchen
Frijoles Maneados - Refried beans with cheese and ancho chili

Chocolate Bourbon Cake with Caramel Whipped Cream
Mango and lime-curd tartlets

Along with Coronas, Spanish wine, and both classic and frozen mango margaritas, we had a good stash of reposado and añejo tequilas from our trips to Mexico, and after-dinner liqueurs. Don Julio, Herradura, Tres Generaciones, Tres Mujeres, and 4 Copas. Patron Cafe, Dobel tequila con cajeta, and Don Julio 1942.

For Boston locals - I picked up fresh-made corn tortillas and chips fried to order from the Cinco de Mayo factory in Chelsea.

I only took a couple of pics, but hopefully another 'Hound will post more.

Roasted Tomatillo, Garlic, Ancho & Arbol Salsa, Lime Curd and Mango Tartlets, and Chocolate Bourbon Cake:

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  1. That was an unforgettable party; Rubee and E are such great hosts which would be no surprise to anyone. It’s impossible to pick food or drink favorites, everything was over-the-top great. These ‘hounds don’t mess around. The mango margaritas were refreshing and not too sweet, and the classic margaritas were perfectly tart. And that was my first time trying the after-dinner Petron Café, like a tasty shot of espresso and liquor.

    We started off with Rubee’s addictive guac and salsas, with the chips that were obviously made fresh. And little empanadas with cilantro crema; the crema also went perfect with 9L & K’s incredible housemade tequila gravlax.

    I’m still thinking about how much I loved the chili rellenos, 2 big pans of them (maybe more) and tons of work for Rubee. But I won’t forget those. The pork was amazing too, seemingly innocuous at the outset, then the building heat testifying to the days-long marinade. The tamales were huge and delicious. And I loved the way everything melded with the rice on the plate, a delicious mess.

    I can’t claim credit for the shrimp, I followed exactly this recipe that I found online:

    The desserts were amazing, too, the bourbon cake was so good, and the little lime tarts with tiny slices of mango were light and delicious.

    An awesome night, many thanks again to Rubee and E and all the 'hounds!

    2 Replies
    1. re: Niblet

      How can I get in this circle??? Wow the menu looks absolutely awesome. Should have been filmed, I would have watched this one on the Food Network.

      1. re: funholidaygirl

        I’m a relative newbie, but I met these great people when Chowhound Limster organized a dinner in Boston and graciously allowed me to join them. I understand that while one can announce a dinner on Chowhound, all arrangements have to be made off-line. I recommend it!

    2. I just can't get over how much food there was!

      Standouts for me were the expertly made gaucamole and salsas, spicy pulled pork, limey shrimp, and both desserts. Wish I'd had more of everything, but after eating a whole relleno, it was a little hard (man, those were really good too! And I only ever found one toothpick in mine....)

      The tequilas were a revelation, especially the Patron Cafe and Dobel tequila con cajeta. I think I loved the Tres Generaciones the best after all, or maybe it was the Tres Mujeres? The images are starting to blur in my head.

      Thanks to Rubee for being the consummate hostess and gourmet cook.

      1. IT WAS AWESOME!!! Standouts for me included
        - the bite-sized taquitos (or whatever the creator calls them, I'm sure he'll chime in) that were one-bit flour tortillas with carne asada and avocado OMG, I could have eaten 20 of these
        - chile colorado (even better for leftovers the next day)
        - those dang shrimp niblet brought, just addictive and I wish I could have snuck a few of these in my pocket for later :-)
        - the beans -- great flavor even without lard/manteca
        - eat nopales' salsa
        - pibil pork shoulder
        - the chips and guacamole -- freshly fried chips are a whole 'nother thing
        - mango margharitas went down way toooo easily

        But the most impressive (and time consuming) item was the chiles rellenos -- I watched our hostess fry up the last batch. They are absolutely GORGEOUS when they first come out of the oil -- puffed up and huge. I think the very fresh (Market basket?) poblanos contributed to the overall quality of the dish, but man, they were really really good.

        1 Reply
        1. re: yumyum

          How could I forget MichaelB’s appetizers…beef filet topping avocado and a hint of spiciness in tiny baked tortilla shells. I had more than my share of those.

        2. I want to add too that I'm not a dessert person, but I flipped over the two desserts. Beetlebug's bourbon cake was the BEST cake I ever had and I am not exaggerating. In fact, I'm going to go finish the last piece now that I'm thinking about it. MichaelB's tarts were fantastic. If I do order dessert out, I always lean towards a fruit dessert so those addictive treats were right up my alley. We had the leftovers for breakfast this morning. mmmmmm

          2 Replies
          1. re: Rubee

            Hey Rubee:

            Congratulations on a great party. I'm with Niblet. I live in the area and am generous of spirit. How can I join in?

            1. re: onefineleo

              Hi - I've met everyone over the years by joining the Chowhound dinners when they're posted. The last one was that fun night at the Paddock that YumYum arranged - lots of Chowhounds showed up. I've never organized one myself but, If you do, I'm in!

              I'm thinking of maybe posting about getting some hounds together for the prix-fixe lunch at L'Espalier that Joanie posted about. Interested? Or maybe enjoying a Manhattan somewhere after work? ; )

          2. Food, food, everywhere the eye turned, more food. I especially loved the chile rellenos and shrimp with the latin citrus sauce. The chile rellenos tasted delicious the next day for breakfast too. I also couldn't stop snacking on the chips, 4 salsas and the guac.

            Here is the recipe for the slow roasted yucatan pork. Three days in the marinade, 3 habeneros and 4 and a half hours in the oven, gave it an extra kick.