Even though most of us have no idea why we’re marking the occasion, Americans love Cinco de Mayo because it gives them an excuse to eat Mexican food and drink margaritas. But who needs an excuse? Living in Texas most of my life, I’ve been reveling in Mexican food – both the Tex-Mex kind and the more authentic version – for years. And it makes me muy feliz.
Why Mexican Food
When chips and salsa have been absent from my life for more than two weeks, I get restless. A lack of margaritas and guacamole for a month brings on feelings of deprivation. For these reasons, Mexican food is often the first thing I seek out when I come back from a trip out of state. Unless that trip is to Mexico.
The (too) few times I’ve traveled south of the border, my taste buds have had a fiesta. Yes, the interpretations are different from our Americanized variations featuring mounds of glorious melted cheese, but the flavors are delicious, and the ingredients lighter, bright, fresh, and equally as satisfying.
The chilies and sauces are mi favorito. Jalapeños, habaneros, green chili, complex moles, chili con carne… My brain releases dopamine just thinking about Mexican food.
My advice for a happier life: Don’t save Mexican food and margaritas for just one day a year. To get you started, check out the following margarita recipe: