As well as all the amazing Olympics fun this weekend, there was another reason to celebrate in Casa Humes. The Hubs turned 39 on Saturday so we decided to celebrate (commiserate!) by having a wee party with some friends.
As we’ve mentioned before on the blog, whether your planning a small informal gathering of friends or a large corporate shindig, party planning tends to go a bit easier if you pick a suitable party theme as your first order of business. As the birthday boy is a big fan of tasty, spicy Mexican food, we decided to plump for a bit of a Mexican theme party.
Rustling up a Mexican feast is a fabulous option when you’re feeding a crowd and the colourful sauces look so good all set out on the table. Definitely a feast for the eyes as well as the palate. If you’re careful to use lean ingredients where possible, your Mexican meal can be pretty healthy too.
I’m a fan of Thomasina Miers and her Mexican cookery books so she was definitely the inspiration for our menu, but it’s also super easy (and free!) to find great Mexican recipes online. Most of the food can be made in advance which is ideal when you’ve got a crowd coming round. A big pot of chilli from which everyone helps themselves is a great centre piece to your Mexican feast, and you can also have various options depending on the dietary requirements of your guests (we actually had three in the end – one meat chilli, one veggy option made with Quorn mince and “cowboy mince” for the kids which is basically non-spicy chilli with extra baked beans).
Added to that, we also had a choice of taco fillings, some tortilla breads and a fabulous selection of guacamoles and salsas. One big tip is not to make everything too spicy – your braver guests can always add heat with chile sauces but it’s very difficult to cool a hot sauce down for your guests with more sensitive palates.
Talking of hot sauces brings us neatly onto the subject of thirst quenching drinks for your Mexican fiesta – there are a great selection of Mexican beers widely available in the UK now. Serve your beer with little slices of fresh lime for authenticity. Of course no Mexican bar would be complete without some tequila – just remember to go easy, we’ve (ahem) “heard” that tequila hangovers can be rather painful!
Now the food is all sorted, you’ll need to liberally sprinkle around some party decorations to give your venue some Mexican charm. We went for a simple but effective option by sticking up some of the great Jointed Cactus cutouts from our wonderful Wild West Cutout Decorations range. Oh, and we decorated ourselves as well with some Mexican Ponchos and Sombrero Hats from our fabulous selection of fancy dress costumes. Viva Mexico!
By Jennie Humes