Cinco de Kentucky Dinner Menu

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The beginning of May can be such a confusing time for dinner party themes – there’s Kentucky Derby, Cinco de Mayo, May Day, Lawrence’s birthday (possibly a smaller number of people care about that one), All-Species Day (that’s a Montpelier thing), leading into Mother’s Day. . .We haven’t come up with a menu that satisfies all of those competing interests yet. However, we can take care of a few on the list with the inspired hybrid holiday of Cinco de Kentucky.
How do you celebrate? With the menu below.
Writing up this menu I discovered that I do not have a signature Cinco de Kentucky cocktail, a shocking oversight and I apologize. I’ll start combining my bourbon and my limes and get back to you on that one:
  • Kentucky Style Nachos (Nachos. . . with bourbon BBQ sauce on top)
  • Johnny Cake with Chicken in Mole Sauce
  • Plantain Lasagna (yeah, there isn’t anything particularly Kentucky about lasagna, point taken, but plantain lasagna is, in turn, Puerto Rican not Mexican so we’re even)
  • Beef Jerky Fajitas (it’s a Rick Bayless recipe. . . beef jerky turns out to be really really expensive. As a frugal Yankee, I added a side of refried beans to stretch the jerky filling a little further)
  • Chipotle-Buttermilk Coleslaw – Shred a small cabbage head (I’ve determined I prefer to do it by hand not on the food processor), grate 1 carrot, grate 1/4 of a red onion (I don’t like a lot of red onion but. . . use your judgement). Dressing: 1/2 cup mayo, 1/2 cup buttermilk or plain yogurt, large pinch of salt, large pinch of pepper, 1 finely minced garlic clove, 2 Tb lime juice, Chipotle Chili powder to taste. . . start at 1 teaspoon and taste.
  • Sweet Buttermilk Biscuits (increase the sugar here to 2 Tb) & Pina Colada Sorbet (the biscuits are standing in for the meringues in this recipe)Alternatively. Or Additionally.
  • Dulce de Leche over Mint-Sweet Cream Ice Cream (probably wouldn’t hurt to stir a little bourbon into that dulce de leche. . . )

A Recommended Reading Item: By coincidence, I happened to read this article by John DeVore “Finding Home at Taco Bell” – James Beard award winner – on Cinco de Mayo. I recommend it . . . not only on days when we celebrate a weird American invented “Mexican” holiday.

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