Culture

Turkey And Pumpkin Pies Are Great, But These Latino Foods Make For A Tasty Thanksgiving

almayfuegococina / 805kitchen / Instagram

Thanksgiving usually conures up ideas of turkeys and pumpkin pies. While those are delicious in their own right, Latinos tend to do things a little different. Okay. We do things a lot different. Why have a basic turkey when you can dig into a pernil instead? Thanksgiving is all about the food but you don’t have to limit yourself to the food everyone else expects you to cook for the big day. Instead, why don’t you try giving your Thanksgiving feast the Latino twist we all dream of.

Turkeys are too expected, tbh.

CREDIT: @sunshinecafedhs / Twitter

It is usually the wow factor of any Thanksgiving dinner. If this is you thing, then go for it. There are ways you can make this main dish a little more Latino. All it takes is some imagination and determination.

One way to make your turkey stand out is using mofongo instead of stuffing.

CREDIT: @louie_est96 / Twitter

Plantains are one of the most versatile and universal foods in the Latino diet. Using them for a stuffing is something that should be more mainstream.

There’s always a pernil if you really want to make things super sabrosa.

CREDIT: @YankeeMan1973 / Twitter

Most Latino tables across the country on Thanksgiving will be presenting a delicious pork dish as the star. Honestly, most of our meals have some kind of pork somewhere in it. It is almost the most popular meat in the Latino community.

Stuffing is fine if you want to do something with limited effort.

CREDIT: @SunFresh161 / Twitter

Some people prefer being a little lazy with boxed options but not Latinos. We always take the long way to make things from scratch to add the best flavor.

Arroz con gandules can make a nice replacement for stuffing.

CREDIT: @katie_ramos12 / Twitter

If you’re Cuban, you’re subbing mashed potatoes and gravy for rice and Cuban black beans. Either way, there will be a pilgrim boat load of rice on the table.

Vegetable are important but they can be done differently.

CREDIT: @yummyeveryday / Twitter

However, there is always that primo who just won’t eat anything that is green and crunchy.

Sub that for arroz verde and you’ll make la familia very happy.

CREDIT: “Arroz Verde Green Rice | This green rice, or arroz verde, is so rich and full of flavor… not to mention the vibrant green color! You can pair this rice with any main dish! | http://thechunkychef.com” Digital Image. The Chunky Chef. 10 November 2018.

Like I said. There will be rice. Yes, I’m aware it’s native to Spain. This is a very ethically confusing holiday okay.

You can bring mashed potatoes, but they will be overshadowed.

CREDIT: @FaveSouthern / Twitter

My mami always made it from a box for show, and the first time I met someone who made it from scratch, I thought they were Martha Stewart.

Bring mashed yucca con mojo instead.

CREDIT: “Mashed Yuca with Mojo” Digital Image. Eating Well. 10 November 2018.

It’s the only root vegetable my holy Latina body is willing to consume. Couple that with mojo (which you can basically sub for any mushroom gravy and pour over every dish), and you’re the Thanksgiving MVP.

There will be corn, but it won’t look like this.

CREDIT: @dandy_fresh / Twitter

Nothing wrong with straight-up corn on the cob. Just amke sure you try to add some kind of seasoning to it other that salt and pepper..

My broke amigos: bring the elotes (and the Cheeto dust).

CREDIT: @ohsnapitslili_ / Twitter

Unless your tio has claimed that dish for the last decade, then don’t go up against him. Be careful of whose territory you’re stepping on.

Nope. No gluten free dinner rolls here.

CREDIT: @THEgfJules / Twitter

There may be Cuban bread, but that’s the closest thing to a dinner roll you’ll find a mi casa. I’m okay with that.

Pack a box of pan de bono and your tías will be blessing you with holy water on the way in.

CREDIT: @fcksociety___ / Twitter

Don’t even bother making that from scratch. You’re home for the holidays. Go to your favorite panadería and take all the credit.

Cranberries sauce is not something we typically have in out households.

CREDIT: @foodandwine / Twitter

Berries are not the most common food in a Latino diet. Do they exist in the foods we eat? Yes. But more likely than not, we use other fruits to satisfy our sweet tooth.

Guava paste is all over the dessert menu.

CREDIT: @atlasobscura / Twitter

This Caribbean paste is all you need to satisfy all of your dessert needs. It truly is one of the best things to ever be created.

I’ve never had pecan pie.

CREDIT: @ruralkingsupply / Twitter

It looks good, and apparently it’s an obligatory dessert for Thanksgiving, but not at our house. Latinos slay the dessert game.

It is all about the flan in any variation.

CREDIT: @lamafiapr / Twitter

Your abuelita’s flan doesn’t look like this, but we’re the Instagram generation. Make this happen.

Eggnog is just too basic.

CREDIT: @TheRebelTom / Twitter

This drink has always scared me, tbh. Not that I am scared of things but the difference between this and regular milk has long made me feel uncomfortable.

Coquito is the island drink of our people.

CREDIT: “Coquito (Puerto Rican Coconut Eggnog)” Digital Image. SparkNotes. 10 November 2018.

Puerto Rican rum, condensed coconut milk, coconut fat, all the kinds of coconuts and spices are what will warm your belly in the festive, happy way. November 1-January 6 is coquito season. Drink up.

However you celebrate Thanksgiving, don’t forget the Latinx classics.

CREDIT: @NellieMilea / Twitter

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!


READ: 9 Things That Happen When You Do Thanksgiving With Latinos

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Did You Know The First Happy Meal Was Invented By A Latina?

Entertainment

Did You Know The First Happy Meal Was Invented By A Latina?

David Paul Morris / Getty Images

Did you know that the first ever Happy Meal was created by a Latina? That’s right, in the mid-70s when Yolanda Fernández de Cofiño was operating various McDonalds in Guatemala, she invented what she dubbed the “Menu Ronald”. The “Menu Ronald”  was invented to help parents keep their kids satisfied when the family went out to eat. The original “Menu Ronald” included a hamburger, small fries and a small sundae. Naturally, word eventually got back to McDonald’s headquarters in Chicago they decided to adopt the practice as their own. They hired a white American man to develop the idea (and subsequently take credit for it) and voila! The Happy Meal was born.

It’s unfortunate that Fernández de Cofiño’s recognition has been lost to the American public, but it’s still inspiring to know that there were business-minded Latinx people in history whose achievements still impact our lives today. In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, we’ve decided to celebrate the underrated Latina entrepreneur Yolanda Fernández de Cofiño for the marketing genius that she was. We’ve documented the evolution of Happy Meal toys from the idea’s inception and launch in the 1970s, to its continuing legacy today.

Take a look below for a nostalgic blast from the past!

1. 1979: The Very First Happy Meal

via Pinterest

Although the original concept of the Happy Meal was invented by Yolanda Fernández de Cofiño, the first official launch of the American Happy Meal happened in 1979. However, the gift wasn’t half as elaborate as it was now. According to records the toys were “a McDoodle stencil, a McWrist wallet, an ID bracelet, a puzzle lock, a spinning top or a McDonaldland character-shaped eraser”.

2. 1984: Ronald and The Gang

 thegoodtoyshop via Ebay

McDonalds Happy Meal toys evolved from spinning tops and erasers to more complex toys. Like, the above “Ronald and the Gang” wind-up cars that were defitenly a step-up from McDonald’s earlier toys. They weren’t as sophisticated as the toys would eventually get, though.

3. 1987: Mc-Transformers

Reddit User gnarrdan

The Transformers/McDonalds mashup was innovative in its day because it was blending the IP of two successful brands. Instead of McDonald’s using its Happy Meal to market other products, it was using its Happy Meal to market other products that were marketing McDonalds. It was a win-win situation.

4. 1988: McNuggets Buddies

EBAY USER MCJANTONE

In 1988, McDonalds hadn’t yet started to do marketing tie-ins with kids’ movies. Instead, they had prizes like “McNuggets Buddies”, which were chicken nuggets dressed in various outfits and costumes. This lasted until the mid-90s.

5. 1994: Sonic the Hedgehog

@NascaronReddit/Twitter

By the mid-90s, the powers-that-be recognized that there was a lucrative market to tap by using Happy Meals to advertise kid-oriented products directly to kids. It was around this time that the entertainment industry really began to see the potential for promoting movies and TV shows through fast-food chains. And if you look at the advertisement above, the Happy Meal only cost $1.99. Those were the days!

6. 1996: 101 Dalmatians

EBAY USER KINGDADDY50

Never the one to pass up an opportunity to advertise, Disney quickly hopped on board the McDonalds train as a means to promote their movies. One of the first Disney x Mcdonald’s ventures were the release of literally one-hundred-and-one collectible dalmatian figurines through their Happy Meals.

7. 1997: “Walt Disney Masterpiece Collection”

Youtube via FastFoodToyReviews

Off the success of their 101 Dalmatians toys, Disney and McDonalds continued their partnership by releasing tiny VHS boxes equipped with a a little toy character from the movie. People really began to see collecting fast food toys as a hobby around this time.

8. Mid-90s: “Teenie Babies”

EBAY User BDK84

Even McDonalds wasn’t immune to the Beanie Baby craze that swept the nation in the mid-90s. Convinced that they would one day be worth thousands, collectors flocked to the Golden Arches to get their hands on miniature versions of the popular plush toys. Unfortunately, most of the “Teenie Baby” toys aren’t worth anything these days.

9. 1997-Now: Barbies

EBAY User PERFECTSHIP

In 1997, McDonald’s started a lucrative partnership with the Barbie line of toys that would last until today. What young girl doesn’t have memories of getting this in their Happy Meal box (whether they liked it or not) while their brother got a Hot Wheels car? It’s safe to say the ’90s weren’t progressive, gender-wise.

10. 2004: Hello Kitty Keychains

Youtube via Lucky Penny Shop

Into the 2000s, McDonald’s took advantage of the Hello Kitty trend by offering plush Hello Kitty key chains in their Happy Meals.

11. 2015: Minion Fever

Ebay user BOB_THE_SPY

Do you remember the time when you couldn’t escape “Despicable Me” minion merchandising, no matter where you went? Well, that included McDonalds. Nowhere was safe.

This Glass Gem Corn Is Blowing Minds All Over Twitter Right Now And I Want Some ASAP

Culture

This Glass Gem Corn Is Blowing Minds All Over Twitter Right Now And I Want Some ASAP

While the Internet might call it “Ghey Corn,” this rainbow-colored corn variety is officially dubbed Glass Gem corn. Not only are there a rainbow of colorful kernels, but they’re also shiny, prompting the ‘Glass’ description. The person responsible for our new favorite, gay-friendly corn is a man by the name of Carl Barnes, who passed in 2016. Barnes enjoyed his life in Oklahoma and cultivated his own personal seed bank passed down from his Cherokee ancestors. Barnes chose to save and replant the seeds from the cobs with the most color, and eventually developed strains of vibrant corn.

One day, Barnes decided to move and asked his friend, Greg Schoen, to protect the seeds. Schoen grew a small handful of the seeds and was shocked when he peeled back the corn stalk to reveal rows and rows of shiny, rainbow-colored corn. Schoen was so excited, he posted the image to his Facebook, and it promptly went viral. Soon, the two cultivated enough seeds to sell online, and people around the country have grown gorgeous varieties.

Green thumbs around the world bought satchels of the precious seed and the following season, were “blown away.”

Credit: @watermicrobe / Twitter

While Schoen may have initiated the first viral sensation over Glass Gem corn in 2012, Ameet Pinto’s viral post has become Mother Nature’s best queer bait yet. With over 7k likes, “I STAN GAY CORN” is the most liked comment. Then, “Taste the rainbow.” 

Some people literally cannot believe this is corn, accusing Pinto of creating a jelly bean cob.

Credit: @mr_plantgeek / Twitter

“Those are just jellybeans ur not foolin me!!!!!” commented one unbeliever. Someone else seems to think that a profitable venture would be to sell the kernels as jelly beans as a scam. Still, others are bringing the negativity to this rainbow party, assuming that because the cob looks different from the mono-crop, that it must be a GMO frankencorn. “Glad to see people trying to live in Chernobyl,” tweets one disbelieving Shane. 

Glass Gem corn is not a GMO crop.

Credit: @Rainmaker1973 / Twitter

In fact, this variety likely healthier than the corn you might buy at a store, which may have been genetically modified rather than artificially selected. Barnes artificially selected the prettiest corn from his crop and decided to grow from those seeds the following year.

When folks hear the story of Carl Barnes, it just adds a whole new depth to the color.

Credit: @CwdickD / Twitter

“Fun fact about these is that they were discovered by a dude who was half-Cherokee and he started growing a sh**load of different corn types to reconnect with his heritage,” tweeted one person. As Barnes was artificially selecting which corn kernels he’d store as seeds for the next year, he grew closer with his Cherokee heritage.

For those of you expecting rainbow colored popcorn, don’t.

Credit: Glass Gem Corn / Facebook

All that’s left of the kernel when you pop the corn is usually that brown kernel skin that gets stuck in your teeth. In the case of Glass Gem corn, you can sort of make out the varying colors of popped kernels, but the popcorn itself is the same color as regular Joe Schmoe popcorn.

The Glass Gem corn isn’t that sweet.

Credit: @SlowFoodUSA / Twitter

According to Pinto, the corn isn’t sweet like yellow corn, so it doesn’t make for good fresh esquites or elotes. All popcorn comes from different varieties of corn that you have to dehydrate to turn into cornmeal or popcorn. “We’ll be eating some colorful popcorn this winter,” Ameet tweeted.

There’s even a Facebook group for Glass Gem growers to share their growing tips and cooking tips.

Credit: Glass Gem Corn / Facebook

In case you were wondering, the Facebook group “Glass Gem Corn” says you can prepare creamy Glass Gem polenta by following these instructions: “Pour into a shallow pan to cool. Cut into squares and lightly brown in a sauté pan.” We don’t know how you do it but keep on making gay polenta, please.

All in all, the Internet is pretty a-maize-d by the gay corn.

Credit: @DonConklin5 / Twitter

“Corn says lgbtq rights,” tweeted one stan. We’re with them. This is one of those moments that we’re allowed to be in wonder over how indigenous folks cultivate the land.

READ: Oaxaca Is Mexico’s Cultural Capital And Home To Its Largest Indigenous Communities, Here’s What You Need To Know