A fresh way to celebrate Mexican freedom

04/29/2014 8:45 PM

05/20/2014 7:25 PM

To Guadalupe Picon Smith, comida (food) and familia (family) just go together.

She is married to Mark Smith, and they have a 14-year-old son, Gregory Mark. Both Gregory and Guadalupe regularly visit Mexico to see her family.

Guadalupe was born in Leon in the Mexican state of Guanajuato, and she came to live in the United States 15 years ago.

On Monday, Guadalupe and others of Mexican descent will celebrate Cinco de Mayo, which commemorates the Mexican victory over the French in the Battle of Puebla in 1862.

Residence:

Kansas City

Occupation:

Child care provider

Special cooking interest:

Authentic Mexican foods

What does Cinco de Mayo mean to you?

In Mexico, it is a day of celebration where people take off the day from school or work and have a barbecue outside and lots of food. It is a time to be with your family and to remember when we won over the French and the victory we felt in being able to have our own land as Mexicans.

In Kansas City, I will make food to share with my family and friends. One of my friends will cook with me, and we will barbecue outside and make flautas and enchiladas.

How important is it to you to pass along your Mexican heritage to your son?

It is very, very important. Gregory and I try to go to Mexico every summer to see my six sisters and five brothers and all their families.

Food is an important part of any gathering we have. My husband and son love the Mexican food I make: tostadas, fajitas, chile rellenos, enchiladas and flautas.

How did you learn to cook?

I grew up cooking with my mother, Maria Daria. She is now gone, but I still like to cook with my sisters when I go back to Mexico.

I learned to cook everything from scratch, which is how I still make food. I don’t like to use anything out of a can, and I use fresh ingredients.

Mexican food doesn’t have to be spicy, but I like to use jalapeno or serrano peppers in my cooking.

Why did you choose this guacamole recipe to share?

I have four different ways to make guacamole. Some guacamoles are smooth; one recipe I have includes adding sour cream. But this is my favorite way to make guacamole. I like to mix it up so that it is chunkier. The traditional way to make guacamole is in a molcajete, which is a bowl made from volcanic rock, which has a black, rough surface.

Some even say the Mexican flag shows the recipe for guacamole. The green is the avocado, the white is the onion and the red is the tomato.

I love this guacamole recipe because I remember when I was younger, my mom would make this guacamole. We would eat it with saltine crackers, tacos, flautas or tostadas. It reminds me of my family in Mexico.

Guadalupe’s Guacamole

Makes 6 to 8 servings

1 small onion, peeled and cut into a small dice 1 serrano pepper, thinly sliced 3 Roma tomatoes, diced 1 bunch cilantro, stems removed and leaves roughly chopped 2 avocados, pitted, peeled and flesh diced 1/4 teaspoon salt Tortilla chips or saltine crackers, for dipping

In a large bowl, gently mix together onion, pepper, tomato, cilantro, avocados and salt. Stir gently so mixture doesn’t turn mushy.

Serve with tortilla chips or saltine crackers.

Per serving, based on 6: 147 calories (67 percent from fat), 11 grams total fat (2 grams saturated), no cholesterol, 10 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams protein, 102 milligrams sodium, 2 grams dietary fiber.

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