Eating Out -Mexican Food Style

Eating out is always fun, yet, sometimes a plant-strong challenge. Many people will tell you that a steak house is the easiest place for a plant-strong dinner. You grab a salad, some steamed broccoli, and an over-sized baked potato. And bingo, dinner is served.

But, let’s face it, boredom can easily set in when you repeatedly visit the local steak joint for dinner. I like the challenge of eating in ethic restaurants and trying the best way to create a delicious and flavorful plant-strong “comida.”

My “five easy pieces” are go-to suggestions for eating at your favorite, Latin restaurant. I love pan-Latino meals and can use these tips when ordering out where my college Spanish is put to use. I can get a baleada as well as a tortilla filled with vegetables ( baleada is a cross-breed of a burrito and a taco from Honduras).

Try these tips:

1. Order a salad, “sin queso.” No cheese. Ask for extra lemon quarters and make a spunky dressing with lemon juice and hot sauce. You will love it.

2. If guacamole is your thing, have it made fresh at the table and ask them to hold the oil and salt. Recently, my family and I were dining at a Mexican restaurant where a server made “tableside guacamole” and it was loaded with oil. Better than that, ask for avocado slices and use them to your liking. Guac is the new sour cream, so to speak.

3. Those fajitas on the menu might look good, but ask if the vegetables can be steamed without oil. The fajitas won’t arrive at the table with that sizzling sound, but they will be delicious and crispy.

4. Who doesn’t love beans? Sadly, most commercially prepared beans at restaurants are soaked in beef or pork fat. The beans should have a warning sign on them, that’s just how bad they are for you. Easiest thing to do? Take a can of your favorite beans! Just check the label for the sodium levels and any added fats (Eden has a canned pinto bean with 15 milligrams of sodium).

5. Ask for corn tortillas. Simple as that. And ask for brown rice. Plain, steamed, brown rice.

Not too long ago, I spent a week in the interior of Honduras, and even in a small village, I was able to easily maintain eating plant-strong. Remember, it comes back to the plants.

Oh, and the best tip? Hold the chips.

You’ll thank me, and I will leave you with a simple, “de nada.”

Buon provecho.