How to Celebrate American Holidays Latino Style

How to Celebrate American Holidays Latino Style

Show love for your adopted country with a "Latino touch"

AUTHOR: Alicia C.

After 20 years in this country, I've helped and hosted countless parties on American holidays such as the Fourth of July and Labor Day. I'm not lying when I tell you our barbeques have changed the way our American friends and neighbors celebrate.

This experience has convinced me it's possible to celebrate these important days in the history of our adopted country and enrich the holidays with delights from our own culture. A few ideas:

1. Offer traditional drinks. It doesn't have to be alcoholic and it can even be a fruit juice such as guava or mango. I bet no one else will bring passion fruit juice for the kids or for a cocktail. Neither will they show up with a refreshing horchata or aguas frescas.

2. Latinize the dessert. I still don't know a single person who hasn't fallen in love with tres leches cake or flan. It's a good idea if you're going to an American's house, or if you have a lot of guests invited to your own house, to explain what they're going to eat and why. Most people love trying new things, especially sweets.


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3. Keep the national colors, but put a little creativity into the decoration. Have you ever considered how pretty papel picado in red, white and blue could be? Last year for Independence Day, we made a piñata using these colors. Kids and adults both enjoyed the fun.

4. Make the meat your way. If you're the hostess, you can decorate the traditional way, but cook with your seasoning. All families have their own secret ingredients and you can add yours to meat or even hamburgers.

5. Offer different side dishes. Arepitas fritas, mariquitas, patacones, yuquitas, chicharrones, tortilla chips with guacamoles or traditional fresh salsa – all these snacks and appetizers will be showstoppers.

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