Cinco De Mayo
Linda and Lucy
Two Sisters Cook
Cinco de Mayo (May 5) is an annual celebration in Mexico. The date is observed to commemorate the Mexican Army’s victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla, on May 5, 1862, under the leadership of General Ignacio Zaragoza. It’s celebrated with parades, music, folkloric dancing and delicious food.
Linda: This year let’s suggest creating a Cinco de Mayo celebration at home by serving a Mexican themed dinner. You can involve the children by having them read about the Mexican battle and victory. They could make decorations plus help the cooks plan the menu.
Lucy: We have some delicious Mexican recipes. I learned to cook Mexican food many years ago when I lived in Arizona. We could buy fresh tortillas there and I enjoyed exploring new cooking techniques. This Taco Soup recipe was given to us by one of our Landrum Farmers market customers, Carole Hall. It’s a thick soup or maybe even a chili. It’s quite tasty.
Linda: Thanks Carole for sharing your recipe with us. Yes, it is like a chili but if you want it more like a soup, you could add tomato sauce or some water. Crushed Fritos would work as a garnish.
Lucy: Chopped green onions would also be good on top, and maybe just sprinkle with shredded cheese and a dollop of sour cream. I have a Mexican Cheese Bread recipe that is a perfect accompaniment for the soup. You use a loaf of French bread from the grocery so it’s quite simple to put together.
Linda: That bread is delicious even as an appetizer. You also mentioned that if you have extra cheese, it’s good to spread on crackers. I’ve discovered a yummy enchilada recipe on the can of Old El Paso Enchilada sauce. Sometimes the best recipes come from a label on a can.
Lucy: I love enchiladas. I think you could even substitute chicken in that recipe or use ground turkey. The Mexican Cheese Bread could be served as a side with enchiladas.
Linda: Cinco de Mayo is just around the corner so let’s get our recipes out to everyone. These dishes are colorful, delightful, and easy to prepare. The whole family can pitch in to celebrate the holiday.
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 envelope taco seasoning
- 1 envelope ranch salad dressing mix
- 1 chopped onion
- 1 can ranch style beans (chili beans)
- 1 can pinto beans
- 1 can whole kernel corn
- 1 can Ro-tel diced tomatoes
- 1 can diced tomatoes
In a Dutch oven, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Add taco seasoning and mix well. Stir in the remaining ingredients (Do not drain vegetables; Carole’s recipe doesn’t call for draining the pinto beans. However, I like to drain and rinse when using these. So just do whichever you prefer.). Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Simmer, 1 hour covered, stirring occasionally. If desired, add small can of tomato sauce or some water if soup gets too thick.
Mexican Cheese Bread
Heat Oven 325
- 1 loaf French or Italian Bread
- ½ lb Cheddar cheese
- ½ lb Velveeta
- 4 Tbs butter
- 1 small can chopped green chiles
- 1 small can sliced black olives
- 1 small jar pimentos
Cut bread in half lengthwise. Melt butter. Add cheeses and melt, stirring together. Add olives, pimentos, and green chiles. Spread mixture on cut bread. Heat in oven to warm. Cut in slices to serve. Can be frozen if wrapped in foil and placed in freezer storage bag.
Old El Paso Beef Enchiladas
Yield: 6 servings (2 enchiladas each)
- PAM® No-Stick Cooking Spray
- 1 pound ground beef (Could substitute ground turkey or shredded chicken)
- 1 can (29 oz each) Old El Paso Enchilada Sauce
- 12 corn tortillas (6 inch)
- 2 cups shredded Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese blend (2 cups = 8 oz)
- Small can of chopped green chiles (optional)
- Sour cream, optional
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray 13×9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
- Cook beef in large skillet over medium heat seven minutes or until meat crumbles and is no longer pink; drain. Stir in 3/4 cup enchilada sauce and optional green chiles; blend well. Add 1 cup of cheese.
- Place tortillas in damp paper towels; microwave on HIGH 30 seconds or just until flexible. Place about 1/3 cup beef mixture evenly on each tortilla. Roll up and place seam side down in baking dish. Top with remaining sauce and remaining 1 cup cheese, spreading evenly and covering tortilla edges.
- Bake covered 20 to 30 minutes. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, if desired.