food and drink

Make A Splash At Friendsgiving This Year With These Easy-To-Make Latino Dishes

@tacotraplord / @TheKitchenista / Twitter

Many of us will not be going home for Thanksgiving this year for a number of reasons. Maybe you just started a new job and can’t get the time off. It might just be too expensive to make the trip. Whatever reason keeps you from going home, there is still hope and it comes in the form of Friendsgiving. The holiday really boils down to food, friends and fun conversations as we get ready for the end of the year.

This year, we’ve come up with ways that you can be the most celebrated human at Friendsgiving. It’ll just take a little preparation and cooking but you will not be taking Takis again this year.

One of the easiest ways to score big is to bring some coquito.

CREDIT: @meeleza / Twitter

You might be thinking that this is really a Christmas drink and you wouldn’t technically be wrong. However, why keep this delicious Puerto Rican eggnog limited to just one month and one holiday? It is not as heavy as American eggnog and will make everyone at the party all the merrier.

Arroz is going to be the staple everyone forgets about.

CREDIT: @fcbsnathalie / Twitter

Rice is as important to a large dinner as the cutlery. Plus, it isn’t something most people outside of Latino culture think about when they think about Thanksgiving. It will be as unexpected and well received as you might imagine.

Cuban beans made proper.

CREDIT: @russellmanthy / Twitter

All beans are good and created deliciously, but there’s just something about Cuban beans. The time, love, dedication and spices needed to get this dish just right is something to be admired. You’ll definitely stand out if you show up with this scrumptious dish.

Picadillo is the crown jewel.

CREDIT: @TheKitchenista / Twitter

If someone is already bringing rice to Friendsgiving, this is a good bet. Bring the flavor and the meat to top that rice with. If you really want to be impressive, make a vegan take on the dish and surprise all of the vegetarians who never get remembered on this day.

Pupusas in lieu of utensils.

CREDIT: @tacotraplord / Twitter

Pupusas are meant to be eaten with your hands so make sure someone brings some napkins. You can use the curtido and salsa for the pupusa. Just don’t get offended if some people use it to eat their rice and beans.

Tostones are always a crowd pleaser.

CREDIT: @nrfe01 / Twitter

These savory fried bites of heaven are so simple and so loved by everyone who eats them they you have to consider bringing them. The best part is that the dip you make for it is just a chopped yellow onion in olive oil. It’s just that easy.

Be the person that brings the green.

CREDIT: @vegancuts / Twitter

Speaking of health, salads can be a nice and unexpected addition to any Thanksgiving. If you’re here for the pressure of bringing a bomb salad that people will love, try this vegan Caesar salad by @vegancuts. Trust, you’ll be appreciated.

Taquitos in bulk because that’s how we do.

CREDIT: @jennfax / Twitter

If your Friendsgiving is happening the weekend after family Thanksgiving, use the leftover sweet potatoes (and everything else) to stuff in these babies. They will definitely do the trick.

Stuffed Canoas are the easiest, cheapest option for excited consumption.

CREDIT: @BorikenPDX / Twitter

I mean, it really doesn’t get easier. Ask your mami to make you some picadillo and then stuff a bunch of platanos and roast in the oven.

Just a couple gallons of queso.

CREDIT: @Fox4Natalie / Twitter

There is never a wrong time, or way, to eat cheese. It’s Friendsgiving so you should expect to eat way too much and enjoy a confusing array of food. Adding a little bit of queso dip to the plate will make it all so much better.

Or you can make some homemade salsa picante.

CREDIT: @kintiman / Twitter

This is a more intensive endeavor if you make it right, but you’re reading this to become the MVP, pues, dale. Put in the work and be glorified until the next Friendsgiving.

If you’re displaced from home, bring the taste of home with pan de bono.

CREDIT: @5HCcSogno / Twitter

It’s the pan that I only ever eat when I’m home in Miami, but if a friend brought these fresh baked I’d kiss them on the mouth. So, beware.

Give these delectable croquetas a chance to shine.

CREDIT: @DevourMadrid / Twitter

Panadería? What panadería? Croquetas are pretty easy to make, believe it or not. There are so many variations that you can find online to make sure you make the best version for your friends.

Guava pastelitos will crush the competition.

CREDIT: @TheKitchenista / Twitter

I know about a thousand ways to make these the lazy way, with straight up Pilsbury pastry dough and guava paste, but if you have more time and resources you can try making the dough from scratch.

Churros con chocolate or café.

CREDIT: @tatii0294 / Twitter

Pack your Café Bustelo and whip up some churros to be the main star post dinner. There isn’t a Latino alive who doesn’t have a little cafecito after a feast to keep the party going.

Stuff that cornbread.

CREDIT: “Mexican Cornbread” Digital Image. Southern Bite. 12 November 2018.

We’re not making weak cornbread from a box okay? But you are getting a can of creamed corn and self rising corn flour. We’re not that domestic okay. Combine with a couple eggs and your favorite meats, cheese, chives and onion. Bake in a cast iron and reheat at the party. This is truly a show stopper.

Yucca is a must for any kind of pot luck gathering.

CREDIT: “Yucca puree” Digital Image. PETA Latino. 11 November 2018.

You can use them to make all sorts of dishes. Puree them to make them look like a better version of mashed potatoes. It is a root so you can treat them like any other root veggie.

Or make some unforgettable Yucca fries.

CREDIT: @sall3n / Twitter

Only you know your audience. Maybe fried food is not appropriate for your friends or it might be the thing they need most. Use these yuccas as needed. Easy and beloved.

Dessert must: arroz con leche.

CREDIT: @PatiJinich / Twitter

Use any milk you choose to make this dish. If you have some lactose intolerant amigos joining the party, you might want to skip the regular milk and use any of the many alternatives to make this dish everything for everyone.

And, of course, flan.

CREDIT: @505Nomad / Twitter

The bottom line is that whoever goes home with an empty plate is the winner. We hope this helps you be that person.


READ: 15 Latino Sides To Impress Everyone At Your Friendsgiving This Year

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

food and drink

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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