Cinco de Mayo Origin, Celebrations and Recipes

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Cinco de Mayo, meaning the 5th of May in English, is a holiday celebrated with drinking, partying and dancing.

Mostly celebrated in the local populace of Mexico’s capital city, Puebla, as well as all over Mexico, Cinco de Mayo is also celebrated in the United States as well. San Diego is a prime example of a city that is well known for honoring this day.

Have you ever wondered how it all began?

Some may think it is Mexico’s Independence Day.  Nope. That is September 16th.

Cinco de Mayo is the day Mexico celebrates its victory against France during The Battle of Puebla in 1862. In 1821 Mexico had won its independence from Spain, but the Mexico-American War from 1846-1848 and the Mexican Civil War of 1858 had ruined the nation’s economy. From these wars Mexico accumulated much debt to France, Spain and England. France decided to take advantage of Mexico’s debts by sending troops to invade Mexico.  France desired to claim itself as ruler over Mexico in order to expand its empire while England and Spain backed off for fear of the United States’ possible reaction and the retaliation of France’s actions.

Once Mexico refused making any more loan payments to France, France eagerly took over and placed Maximilian, the Archduke of Austria, as the “Emperor” of Mexico.  Near the city of Pueblo, at the forts of Lorento and Guadalupe, France’s invading forces were met with Mexico’s rebellion and tough resistance.

Armed with a small militia of only 4,500 men, Mexico’s soon to be famous general, General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguin, and its soon to be dictator, Colonel Porfirio Diaz, who had command of the cavalry, were there waiting for French’s military force of a 6,500 men.

According to the Cinco de Mayo site, through excellent cavalry skills and clever local tactics Mexico’s small army was able to penetrate through France’s vast militia and won on the 5th of May, Cinco de Mayo. Despite France’s eventual victory over Mexico in the coming years of battle, Cinco de Mayo is still celebrated year after year.

As Cinco de Mayo festivities include drinking, eating and dancing, here are a few drink recipes that will “spice up” your celebrations.

Peligroso Thai Basil Cucumber Margarita

-1.5 oz Peligroso Silver
-2 oz Agave Nectar or simple syrup
-2 fresh limes squeezed
– 1 cucumber
-3-4 Thai Basil leafs
-Splash of ginger ale
-Black pepper

Combined Thai basil and two slices of cumber in a shaker, and muddle with the agave nectar or simple syrup. Add the fresh lime juice and tequila with crystal clear ice. Shake vigorously, and pour over the rocks. Garnish with a cucumber slice on the side with a sprig of basil. Throw just a small pinch of black pepper on top.

The Peligroso Fresh Fruit Margarita

-Orginal Lime/Pineapple/Mango
-1.5-2 oz of either Peligroso Reposado or Peligroso Silver Tequila
– 1-1.5 oz of triple sec
-1/2 of a fresh lime squeezed
-Fill the glass to the top with fresh fruit juice
– Shake all ingredients together in a shaker, and return back to glass

CC Donkey Show

Created by classic surfboard shaper Chris Christenson

-1 1/4 oz. Peligroso Silver Tequila
-3 oz. ginger beer
-1 tsp. sugar syrup
-1/4 oz. lime juice
-1 sprig mint
-1 slice lime

Served over ice in a tall glass and enjoy!

Recipes are courtesy of Peligroso Tequila company who will be celebrating their one-year anniversary on Cinco de Mayo.

Photos From Serge Melki and Eric Chan via Flickr and Drink photos from Breanna Warner via Peligroso Company

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