May 1st. May Day. My husband and I were asking around here, and no one in Arizona knows what a May Day Basket is. They are basically a container (usually cups) filled with popcorn and other goodies that you leave for friends on their doorstep. The aspect of running away so that you do not get kissed was a real threat as a child! Please tell me we weren’t the only ones to grow up with this tradition?
With it being May 1st, the other thing that must mean is Mexican food. I know you’ve heard the commercials already. They’re definitely on the TV and radio around here… tacos, margarita specials. Yes, Cinco de Mayo is quickly approaching! As if I actually needed a reason to crave Mexican food 🙂
If you don’t feel like fighting the crowds at your local Mexican joint, it is certainly possible to conquer a Cinco de Mayo themed meal at home. Start the meal with this guacamole. In the next couple days, I’ll provide a couple meal options and finish up with an easy but impressive dessert. Throw in some chips, salsa, and a little tequila, and you’ll have quite the fiesta.
The term torta has many meanings, but in Mexico torta is often a sandwich. This is my quick “Mexican” meal and just goes to show that it is possible to have a delicious meal when you are short on time. It also goes to show that you can make a Mexican-themed meal vegetarian without relying totally on cheese. The original recipe for these is from Eating Well. When we made these, I made them exactly as written, however in the future, I would swap lettuce for the cabbage. I typically like small doses of cabbage in my tacos for the crunch, but on the top of these sandwiches, it was just too much. When I made these, I used a loaf of homemade French bread that I had made (simply because it needed to be used), however I am sure these would be great with purchased bread as well. We made them open-faced, but you can always add the top piece of bread if you’d prefer. Enjoy!
Adapted from Eating Well
1 (15oz) can black beans
3 Tbsp. prepared salsa
1 Tbsp. chopped pickled jalapenos
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1 ripe avocado
2 Tbsp. minced onions
1 Tbsp. lime juice
salt, to taste
1 whole grain (8-10-inch long) baguette
1/2 cup shredded jack cheese
1-1/2 cups shredded lettuce
Preheat the oven to broil (low if possible). Mash beans, salsa, jalapeno, and cumin in a small bowl. Mash avocado, onion, and lime juice in another small bowl. Add salt to taste.Slice baguette in half the long way so that you have a top and bottom piece of bread. Cut in half to make 4 equal sized pieces. Hollow out some of the bread from the middle of each piece, set aside for another purpose. Divide the bean paste and avocado mixture between the pieces. Sprinkle with cheese. Broil for a few minutes until the cheese has melted. Divide the lettuce between the sandwiches and enjoy!