Photo: Battle of Puebla
Cinco de Mayo commemorates the May 5, 1862 Battle of Puebla where the Mexican Army surprisingly defeated French forces. The city of Puebla, about two hours south of Mexico City, is not only where the French were kicked out - it’s a place where some fabulous Mexican dishes have kicked in! Puebla is also home to Mexico’s famous culinary exports, mole and Chili Rellenos.
Legend has it that visitors surprised two non-cooking nuns from Puebla. They used a molcajete (mortar and pestle) to grind every ingredient they could find - including tomato, chocolate, and Poblano peppers chilies - then simmered the concoction to thicken it. Chicken Mole Poblano is traditionally served on Cinco de Mayo. Chili Rellenos, a stuffed pepper dish, is also made using Puebla’s native Poblano chilies.
On Cinco de Mayo, Mexicans around the world celebrate their Mexican ancestry and people of all backgrounds celebrate Latin culture. Latin Americans now number 50.5 million people making Latin celebrations increasingly popular.