Cinco de Mayo (the 5th of May) commemorates Mexico's victory over the invading forces of French Emperor Napoleon III at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. It has become the one of the biggest celebrations of Mexican pride in the southwestern United States and Mexico.
As with any holiday, food plays a big part, so it's fitting to open with a big communal pot of the Southwestern classic Tortilla Soup. But what's a celebration without cake? Although Tres Leches (three milks) Cake draws on influences from outside Mexico, such as Spain, Cuba and Costa Rica, it was adopted into Tex-Mex tradition more than a generation ago—just in time to become a favorite during this revitalized holiday.
By David Feder, a food writerin Buffalo Grocer, Ill. Recipe by Robin Noelle, a food writer in San Diego, Calif.