Monday, May 03, 2010

Cinco de Mayo

The fifth of May is celebrated far and wide, even by those who may not know what they are celebrating. As a result, Mexican restaurants are generally packed that day.

May 5th, also happens to be my buddy Rawbin's birthday (here she is pictured with Jeff and myself last summer; she's the one with the cute braids), which we like to recognize by going out for guacamole earlier (or later) in the week to avoid the crowds. Then, on the big day, we can chill at home with some simple Cinco de Mayo-inspired meals.

Of course, it's easy to make or even pick up a fresh garden salsa and/or guacamole from the store, and serve it with fresh veggies and raw chips/crackers found on the Natural Zing website. I even like to add raw chips/crackers to a taco salad like this one (I made the mock corn chips in the following pic, but Lydia's Fiesta Crackers and these Mexican organic golden flax crackers work great in a pinch).

Taco salad was always a staple at the family picnics I attended growing up. It usually had a base of chopped romaine leaves, sliced cucumber and cherry tomatoes. There was also taco meat (a good raw substitute is soaked walnuts and almonds processed together with nama shoyu or Bragg's liquid aminos, a drizzle of olive oil and taco spices like cumin, coriander, chili powder, cayenne pepper, garlic and sea salt; I find that adding some sage or poultry seasoning makes it taste more "meaty"), cheese (I use shredded carrot instead) and Catalina dressing (I don't know why Catalina dressing, but that's what everyone always used to make it with back then; I rawified the dressing recipe for you below). Toss it all together with some raw chips and you've got yourself a fiesta in a bowl. Yum!

Catalina in the Raw
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, soaked for a least a few hours
1/3 cup soaking liquid (from the tomatoes)
1/2 cup agave nectar
1/3 cup olive oil
3 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. celery salt
1/4 tsp. dry mustard
1/4 tsp. onion powder (or fresh, to taste)
dash of paprika
pinch of sea salt

Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Add to your bowl of taco salad ingredients, toss and enjoy!

Shannonmarie, a.k.a. "Rawdorable," also posts on her blog of the same name,

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