Hispanic Heritage Month: Celebrate with these recipes

Have a party to share your heritage with friends and family.

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Rice and beans is a classic Hispanic dish.

Rice and beans is a classic Hispanic dish.

Hispanic Heritage month occurs from September 15 until October 15 and celebrates the contributions of Hispanics to American culture from Spain, Central America, South America, and the Caribbean. Several Hispanic countries celebrate their independence during this time.

Cooking and sharing authentic ethnic dishes and meals is one way that people celebrate the month. So, go ahead and have a party to share your heritage with friends and family. You might even find a new favorite that you'll make for years to come.

Happy HHM!

Pork ribs with adobo

Adobo sauce is a Mexican recipe that combines tomatoes and jalapenos. It's often served on pork, so using it to flavor a few racks of pork ribs is a delicious way to give homage to your Hispanic heritage. To make the sauce, combine several tomatoes in a pan with jalapenos to taste. Add some onion and a clove of garlic. Boil the mixture until the tomato skin begins to peel away.

Place the sauce in a blender and puree until smooth. Serve ribs basted with the adobo sauce alongside beans, rice, and a warm tortilla. Those who hail from Cuba often prepare a similar dish with steak instead of pork.

Pozole

Pozole is a traditional soup served in many Hispanic families. The soup base is generally chicken broth, but it could be beef or vegetable broth if you prefer. Common pozole ingredients include cubed pork, hominy, onion, and garlic. Season the soup with oregano, chili powder, cumin, and salt to taste. Garnish pozole with avocado slices and serve with a tortilla. A soup made with oxtail, plantains, and potatoes is also common in some Hispanic countries.

Fruit salad

Many Hispanic countries are located in warm climates, which means a plethora of fruit is available year-round. Many celebrations and even everyday meals feature fruit salad as an accompaniment to the main dish. For your Hispanic heritage party, serve a combination of fruits that are in season. Papaya, pineapple, bananas, and oranges create an authentic salad.

Beans

Beans are a staple in many Hispanic nations, so it makes sense to include them during heritage month. Make a pot of beans and eat them as an appetizer with warm corn chips. For a meal, wrap beans in tortillas, then top with cheese and chili for burritos. Add beans to tacos, or serve them alongside enchiladas or tamales. Serve beans with rice, avocado, and a tortilla for a Hispanic heritage picnic. For a heartier meal, mimic a Venezuelan classic and serve beans and rice with cheese and shredded pork or beef.

Rice pudding

Rice pudding is an easy and authentic way to round out a Hispanic-inspired meal . To make it, combine cooked, cold rice with milk until it's a bit thick but not runny. Season the pudding with cinnamon, ginger, and a bit of honey. Add raisins if you'd like.

Orange pudding

Orange pudding is another tasty and easy dessert to please a crowd. Combine orange juice with sugar and cornstarch in a pan and bring the mixture to a boil. Once it's boiling, remove it from the heat and add butter and cinnamon. Chill before serving.

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