Rebel Mariposa is an indigenous woman who is chef and owner of La Botánica, a vegan restaurant in San Antonio that embodies indigenous traditions from the Gulf Coast, Mexico, and New Mexico. She helped design the menu for a benefit gala to benefit American Indians in Texas at the Spanish Colonial Missions, a nonprofit that works to preserve the indigenous traditions of the peoples of South Texas.
The Cactus Blossom Gala features a five-course meal of native cuisine. Mariposa is contributing two courses: a sunflower risotto and an amaranth salad.
She said designing the menu was a challenge. “I think just personally, as a woman of color, sometimes you get imposter syndrome and you don't think that you're worthy,” Mariposa said.
Mariposa overcame her personal insecurities and made an emotional connection with the food.
“As I was creating this menu and I remember kind of being like, ‘whoa, why is it so emotional for me?’” Mariposa asked herself.
“But it was because I was reconnecting with the land and understanding how much has been taken from me through colonialism, through colonization. And it really affected me for a while there.”
Mariposa is ultimately grateful for the challenge “because, again, had I not been asked to do this, I might have not done that work in that journey, personally and emotionally for a little bit longer.”
IF YOU GO
WHERE: Progreso Hall, 1306 Guadalupe Street, San Antonio, TX 78207
WHEN: Sat., May 11, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
COST: Tickets start at $50. Available here.