American Independence Day – also known as the Fourth of July – is one of the biggest barbecue holidays of the year.
This year, you can freshen up your party menu by incorporating cuisines from around the world. Not only will it give your guests some new flavors to enjoy but it will also permit everyone to celebrate one of the greatest things about our country: that we welcome all people here from around the world.
1. German Potato Salad
More than 17% of Americans report themselves as having some German ancestry, which is the largest self-reported ancestral group. Odds are, if you’re hosting a barbecue for the 4th of July, at least some of your guests are German-Americans. Here’s a Food Network recipe for German Potato Salad to help you celebrate.
2. Tandoori Chicken
Try something new on the grill with this recipe for Tandoori Chicken. You can adjust the seasonings to make it more – or less – spicy without sacrificing the amazing flavor.
3. Korean Barbecue
There’s nothing like barbecued spare ribs on the 4th of July, so tuck your napkin into your collar and get ready to get messy with this Korean Barbecue recipe from Epicurious.com. As of the 2000 Census, there are more than one million Korean-Americans in the United States.
4. Mexican Salad with Avocado Dressing
Fresh and delicious, this salad would go beautifully with whatever else you’re serving at your celebration. It’s also a great way to honor Mexican-Americans, whose numbers have increased 58% between the 1990 and 2000 Census.
5. Austalia/New Zealand’s Pavlova
Not only is this a beautiful-looking dessert, it’s also light after a heavy meal of barbecued foods. It uses fresh strawberries, but if you want to re-create the American flag, go ahead and dot in some blueberries to give the dish our traditional red, white, and blue look.
Although it’s not one of Mexico’s official federal holidays, Cinco de Mayo is growing in popularity as an opportunity for Mexicans and particularly Mexican-Americans to celebrate their cultural heritage.
Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Battle of Pueblo in 1862 when Mexican forces won an important victory against the French who had invaded the country in an attempt to get Mexico to continue making payments on a debt.
Although France eventually occupied Mexico and even named an emperor, Maximilian I, they did not hold the country for long.
It is believed that Cinco de Mayo first began as a symbol of Mexican resistance to the French occupation.
Today, most people celebrate with food, music, and dancing.
Here’s a recipe for you to enjoy – it’s a summer favorite for my family and me. Vamos a comer!
Corn and Black Bean Salad (also can be served with tortilla chips)
1 can yellow corn
1 can black beans
1/2 medium onion, minced
1/2 green bell pepper, minced
1/2 red pepper, minced
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder (or use 1 clove of garlic, finely minced)
1 tbsp. lime juice
Cilantro (for garnish)
1/4 tsp. chili powder (optional)
Open the cans of corn and black beans and rinse in a colander. Drain well and transfer to a serving bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients. Can be served immediately or for richer flavor, allow to marinate well before serving. Can be served over lettuce, with rice, or tortilla chips.
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Here’s a short list of places NOT to go if you’re averse to tomfoolery:
However, having lived in West Africa, I can tell you that former colonies of any of these countries are extremely likely to maintain the practice of April Fool’s jokes. In Burkina Faso, it was known as the “poisson d’avril,” which means “April fish.” This turn of phrase stems from the young and naïve fish spring fish who were easily caught on April 1.