Happy Cinco de Mayo!
Are you hosting or going to a party/gathering/get-together this weekend? Great! Since Sunday is Cinco de Mayo, why not give the food a Mexican theme?!
Of course, I never need an excuse to eat Mexican food, but when you’ve got a special day staring you right in the face…. well, you may as well use it!
Today Sockmonkey Pedro is trying out a new dish, and these easy little appetizers will be perfect for your Fiesta. Plus, it’s Gluten Free!
This recipe was one that came out of a conversation I had with my friend Mary, who is an avid foodie. She suggested three things for me, for this week’s blog:
a.) that I write about a Mexican dish
b.) that I incorporate my potatoes I love to make
c.)…plus, she even told me where I could get a sombrero for the monkey!
So, without her, you guys might be looking at a blank page today…. so Thank you Mary!! =0)
These little potatoes don’t take much time, and take even less, if you do some of the prep beforehand.
Prep 1: Make the Seasoning
This can be done far in advance. I like to have this blend on hand, and it takes just a couple of minutes. Measure everything into a mortar and then grind with the pestle until the entire seasoning blend is of a consistent size.
¼ tsp. Cumin
4 tsp. Garlic Powder
4 tsp. Leaf Oregano
1 tsp. Onion Powder
¼ tsp. Black Pepper
1 tsp. Paprika
¼ tsp. Salt
⅛ tsp. Cayenne Pepper
1 Tbsp. Arrowroot Powder
Prep 2: Slice & Dice
This can be done the day before. Once finished with each, store in jar or plastic bag overnight, and then take out 30 minutes before needed to take off the chill.
3 Tomatoes: Cut each into 8 slices
12 Black Olives: Rough chop
Cilantro: Chop fine to make 2 Tbsp.
8 Medium Red Potatoes
½ c. Plain Greek Yogurt
2 Tbsp. Fresh Minced Cilantro
1 Pound Ground Beef
Mexican Seasoning (recipe above)
3 medium Tomatoes, sliced in 8 slices each
2 Medium Avocados
1 Tbsp. Lemon Juice
Tabasco® (you decide how much)
¼-½ tsp. salt
¼ c. shredded Jack Cheese + ¼ c. shredded Cheddar Cheese*
* OR ½ c. Mexican Cheese *OR ½ c. Colby/Jack Cheese)
12 Black Olives, rough chopped
Preheat oven to 400°
Line a 11×15″ Baking Pan with foil. Brush foil with olive oil.
Wash Potatoes. Slice each one into thirds, the long way. Arrange in one layer in pan (6 rows of 4 each). Brush potatoes with olive oil. Bake 40 minutes till potatoes are golden and starting to get crispy on their tops. Take pan out of oven and carefully flip each potato over. Place pan back in oven for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, in pan, cook ground beef over medium-high heat until browned, stirring often. Drain fat. Add 1 Tbsp. Mexican seasoning. Add 2 Tbsp. water. Add 2-4 shakes Tabasco®. Cook over low heat for 4 minutes and stir occasionally. Taste the meat. If you need more seasoning, add ½ tsp. at a time, and make sure to cook for another minute. Turn off heat.
While meat is cooking, do the following:
Mix the Greek Yogurt and Cilantro together. Set aside.
Peel and halve avocados. Remove and throw away seed. Mash avocados and add salt, lemon juice, and Tabasco®. Set aside.
Slice tomatoes. Set aside.
Chop olives. Set aside.
Grate cheese. Set aside.
To Assemble (Photos below):
Lay out Potato Slices
Top in the following order on EACH potato:
1 tsp. Cilantro-Greek Yogurt Mixture
1 Tbsp. Mexican Ground Beef Mixture
1 Tomato Slice
2 tsp. Avocado Guacamole
1 Pinch of Grated Cheese
½ tsp. chopped olives
This can be served as an easy appetizer (2 per person) and they’re sturdy enough to be held in the hand. Of course, you can always serve them on a plate with a fork and knife.
Here’s another idea you can use for your Mexican Party this weekend:
Remember my Green Tomatillo Salsa? It would be perfect with chips or in your tacos!
Here’s the best part about this recipe… you can make these any way you want.
For example, my younger son made his with just potatoes, meat, tomato, cheese & olives.
Enjoy, have fun, and Happy Cinco de Mayo!
Here’s a little something from one of my favorites, Calvin & Hobbes: