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Mexican Fiesta

by Meghann on September 21, 2008

One of the reasons I moved back to Orlando is because of the great family I have down here. I don’t just mean my immediate family, I’m talking cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents galore. I was very lucky to grow up with all of my extended family living so near by. My Dad is from a family of 7 boys and my mom has a sister and a brother so I have plenty of cousins to go around. Now that we’re all getting a little older all of my cousins are getting married and having babies so as you can imagine my close knit family is expanding rapidly each year.

Once a month my Dad’s side of the family gets together to celebrate birthdays that took place in that month. Today we all got together to celebrate September birthdays. We had a ‘Mexican Fiesta’ specifically for the occasion. Everyone brought a mexican dish or dessert for the occasion. The great thing about my family is we don’t do store bought. All the items on the tables were made with love from home and were mmmm..mmmm… good!

I have been itching to bake something the past week, so I used this get together as the perfect excuse to break out the flour and sugar. After scouring my zillions of bookedmarked baking recipes I have I decided to bake some Pineapple Cupcakes.

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As you can see I lack in baking presentation skills. I took a zillion pictures of these and could not manage a great one. I followed the recipe linked above, except I halved the sugar. I tend to always half the sugar in whatever baking recipe I try and you usually can’t tell the difference. These were still wonderfully sweet without the extra sugar.

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Of course I had to try on of my creations when I finished. I know, they’re not pretty, but boy were they good. Everyone raved about them at the party which always makes me feel good. ๐Ÿ™‚

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There were so many great yummy mexican choices for lunch.

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I managed to narrow it all down to a few yummy choices. From left to right Veggie fajita, block beans and rice, fruit salad, cornbread and a chicken taquito (that my Daddy made so I had to try…. soo good!) It was hard to resist to not go back for seconds, but I just stayed in my seat and chatted so I wouldn’t ‘accidentally’ stumble into the kitchen and graze my way through all of the left over food.

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Along with the cupcakes, I brought some grilled veggies for a veggie fajita option. I also brought the multigrain tortillas. ๐Ÿ™‚ I LOVE veggie fajitas, they’re my favorite dish at any mexican resteraunt. For this dish I combined zucchini, yellow squash, broccoli, onion and portabello mushrooms. I seasoned the veggie with low sodium taco seasoning. I couldn’t resist the pepper jack cheese as a topper for my fajita,

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AN of course, I had to fill the majority of my plate with this amazing fruit salad my cousin made. I think fruit just completes any meal and always love to see it as an option at any sort of family event.

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Of course the best part of any birthday celebration is the dessert table. Of course, the dessert table is my number one weakness, especially when everything is homemade!

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I wanted a little sample of everything. From left to right, Marble cupcake with chocolate icing and sprinkles, pineapple upside down cake ( Grandma’s famous recipe that put my cupcakes to shame), a little piece of cookie cake, and of course just to round it out with a little protein…a mini reeses peanut butter cup… I just couldn’t resist the halloween candy bowl.

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Two of my Uncles were debating back and forth on who made the best Margarita so I happily volunteered to be a blind tasting judge. I am a traditional margarita girl so I went with my Uncle Bob’s.. My Uncle Andy uses amaretto in his mix (I wasn’t a fan). I only had a sip of each before passing them along to my mom. I had a nice drive home after the party.

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What’s a mexican fiesta without a little pinatta action? THis is Riley who is dangerous with that bad and even after the pinatta fell she continued to beat the crap out of the pirate.

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Riley’s little sis Genevieve wanted to get into the pinatta action as well. She was kicking some butt with that bat as well.

Family gatherings are always so tiring, but its so nice to come together and just play catch up. I don’t even want to know how many times I had to explain my new job to everyone. I guess it’s the same as when I was in college except then it was always “What are you plans after school?”  I guess there will always be questions and I will always have to give the same answer twenty times or more.. oh well.

After the party I head back to Orlando and have been a lazy lump on the couch. Around 8:00 I started to get a tad hungry so I heated up some leftover flatbread from Friday night’s dinner.

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On the side I had a handful of grapes. This was a great light meal after such a heavy lunch. I definitely was a little piggy, but what’s life if you can’t be a little piggy every once in a while.

The Emmys are on tonight!! I am such a TV fanatic so the Emmys are big thing to me, its the perfect ending to a wonderful weekend!

1 VeggieGirl September 21, 2008 at 8:58 pm

So lovely that you live so close to all of your family members!! Looks like a fabulous (and super-delicious) celebration!!

Enjoy the Emmys!

2 Megan September 21, 2008 at 9:18 pm

How awesome that your family is still so close and has fun gatherings like this! Your cupcakes look delicious. Love the blind tste tasting!

3 Erin September 21, 2008 at 9:40 pm

That’s a great quote: “What’s life if you can’t be a little piggy once in awhile?” I SO AGREE. It seems I picked tonight to oink a little myself. ๐Ÿ™‚
I love the look of your cupcakes. They look rustic.

4 Erica September 21, 2008 at 10:03 pm

What a fun party! I have made those cupcakes and everyone LOVED them! Did you use the icing she recommended? I opted for another. We are moving to be closer to family too! Its sooooo hard to be far far away!

5 Laura September 21, 2008 at 10:12 pm

Man, I wished I had family members who cooked like that! Looks like a fabulous time. ๐Ÿ™‚

Don’t worry, I will not judge food based on presentation (even though I think those cupcakes look delicious!)

6 jenngirl September 21, 2008 at 10:45 pm

What a fun day! And that spread of delicious food looks fantastic.

I am with you, I love living so close to my family, I don’t know what I would do if I had to go for months without seeing them.

Have a great Monday ๐Ÿ™‚

7 Kristie September 21, 2008 at 11:37 pm

Food presentation is important but when it comes to good ol homebaked goods, sometimes it’s just all the more fun when they look a little on the messier side. It just adds to the homemade feel!

I’m SUCH a sucker for homemade goodies. They completely kill any storebought good you could ever buy. I always go crazy for potluck family dinners where everything is homemade. They are the BEST.

I love the idea of a Mexican Fiesta. It looks like a ton of fun. Complete with pinata. Love it.

8 hangrypants September 22, 2008 at 1:00 pm

What a fun party! I think the pineapple cupcakes looks good – very unique!

Have a good Monday.

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