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April 29, 2009
Lots of recipes to get the fiesta started

Recipe researcher Sheila Kern offers up everything you need to get your Cinco de Mayo party started with recipes for guacamole, mango salsa and enchilada casserole. Enjoy!

 Cinco de Mayo Guacamole

From (California Avocado Commission)

Serves 12


2 ripe Fresh California avocados, seeded and peeled

1 Tbsp fresh lime juice

1/3 Cup diced tomato, seeded and well drained

1/4 Cup chopped green onion

2 serrano chiles, chopped

1/4 Cup cilantro, chopped

1/2 tsp salt


Cut avocados into 1/2 inch cubes.

Stir in lime juice.

Fold in remaining ingredients.

Guacamole is best made as close to serving as possible.

For short-term storage, seal in an airtight container with a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the guacamole.

Serve with tortilla chips.

Cinco de Mayo Guacamole with a Southwestern Kick

From (California Avocado Commission)

Serves 12


4 California avocados

1 Cup roasted corn kernels

1 medium lime

4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

2 jalapeno peppers, finely chopped, or to taste

1 tsp ground cumin, or to taste

1 tsp salt


Coarsely mash (do not puree) California avocados. Fold in remaining ingredients. Squeeze limejuice into mixture. Serve with blue corn chips or deep-fried flour tortilla chips.

Serving Suggestions

Serve with blue corn chips or deep-fried flour tortilla chips.

Classic Guacamole

From (California Avocado Commission)

Serves 8


4 ripe Fresh California avocados, seeded and peeled

2 Tbsp lemon juice

1 clove garlic, crushed

1 tomato, finely chopped

1/4 Cup finely chopped onion

1/4 tsp ground cumin

3 drops hot pepper sauce

Tortilla chips


Using a fork, coarsely mash avocado with lemon juice and garlic.

Stir in remaining ingredients to blend.

Garnish as desired and serve with tortilla chips.

Mango Salsa



1 ripe mango, peeled, pitted, and diced (about 1 1/2 cup)

1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped

1 Jalapeno chile, minced (include ribs and seeds for a hotter taste if desired)

1 small cucumber, peeled and diced (about 1 cup)

3 Tbsp fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

3 Tbsp fresh lime juice

Salt and pepper to taste

Also good with diced red bell pepper and jicama.


Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If the salsa ends up being a little too hot or acidic for your taste, you can temper it by adding some diced avocado.




1 large mango, peeled, diced

3 tablespoon red onion, minced

3 tablespoons diced green pepper

3 tablespoons diced red pepper

1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tsp. minced fresh chives

1/2 large avocado, diced


Mix all ingredients except avocado in large bowl.

Add avocado to salsa and stir gently to combine.

Salt and pepper to taste.

Layered Chicken and Black Bean Enchilada Casserole


Servings: 8


2 cups diced chicken breast meat

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 (4.5 ounce) can diced green chile peppers, drained

1 (10 ounce) can red enchilada sauce

8 (6 inch) corn tortillas

2 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese

1 (8 ounce) container sour cream


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

Heat a large skillet over medium heat, and spray with vegetable cooking spray. Saute chicken with cumin and coriander until chicken is cooked through. Transfer to a medium bowl. Stir in the cilantro, black beans, and green chile peppers.

Spread half of the enchilada sauce over the bottom of an 11x7 inch baking dish. Place 4 tortillas over the sauce, overlapping if necessary. Spoon half of the chicken mixture over the tortillas, and sprinkle with half of the cheese and half of the sour cream. Spoon the remaining enchilada sauce over the cheese, and make another layer of tortillas. Layer the remaining chicken mixture over the tortillas. Cover dish with a lid or aluminum foil.

Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven. Remove the cover, and sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top and dot with sour cream. Continue cooking, uncovered, for an additional 5 to 10 minutes, or until cheese melts. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Enchilada Casserole



2 pounds lean ground beef

1 medium-size onion, peeled and chopped

4 tablespoons chili powder

1 teaspoon cumin

1 small can chopped green chilies

Salt and pepper to taste

12 (5 to 6-inch) corn tortillas

1 (16-ounce) can black or red beans

One-and one-half cups grated cheddar cheese

2 (14-ounce) cans Mexican stewed tomatoes


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Brown the beef and the onions in a large skillet over medium heat. Reduce the heat and add the chili powder, cumin, and chilies. Cook, stirring, for 5 to 10 minutes longer. Season with salt and pepper.

Grease a 13x9-inch dish and spread 6 tortillas on bottom. Pour the beef mixture, and then the beans over the tortillas. Cover with the remaining tortillas. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the top. Pour the tomatoes over the cheese. Bake until the casserole begins to brown around the edges, about 1 hour.

Spinach Enchilada Casserole



1 16 oz. container sour cream

12 oz. shredded Monterey Jack cheese

1 10-oz package frozen spinach, thawed and drained

1 20 oz. can green enchilada sauce

18 6 inch corn tortillas

1 onion, chopped

1 2 oz. can chopped black olives


1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a small bowl, combine sour cream, spinach and 3/4 of the cheese.

2. Into a 9×13 inch pan, pour a small amount of enchilada sauce to coat bottom of pan. Layer 6 tortillas on bottom of pan.

3. Layer half of the spinach-sour cream mixture, half of onion and 1/3 of the olives over the tortillas. Repeat.

4. Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the final layer of tortillas.

5. Sprinkle with remaining olives.

6. Bake for 20 minutes.

7. Cut into squares and serve.


They aren't authentic Mexican dishes, but Pillsbury has some tasty recipes that are easy and  family friendly.

Easy Crescent Taco Bake


Makes 6 servings


1 can (8 oz) Pillsbury refrigerated crescent dinner rolls

1 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef

3/4 cup Old El Paso Thick 'n Chunky salsa

2 tablespoons Old El Paso taco seasoning mix (from 1-oz package)

1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese (4 oz)

Shredded lettuce, as desired

Diced tomato, as desired


1. Heat oven to 375°F. Unroll dough; separate into 8 triangles. Place in ungreased 9-inch square pan or 10-inch pie plate; press over bottom and up sides to form crust.

2. In 10-inch skillet, cook beef over medium heat 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly cooked; drain. Stir in salsa and taco seasoning mix; simmer 5 minutes. Spoon meat mixture in crust-lined pan; sprinkle with cheese.

3. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until crust is deep golden brown and cheese is melted. Served topped with lettuce and tomato.

A 4.5-oz can of Old El Paso chopped green chiles can be added to the meat mixture. Serve with additional salsa, sour cream and avocado slices.

Taco Pizza


Makes 6 servings


1 can (11 oz) Pillsbury refrigerated thin pizza crust

1 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef

1 package (1 oz) Old El Paso taco seasoning mix

1/4 cup water

1 can (4 oz) Old El Paso chopped green chiles, drained

1/4 cup sliced ripe olives, drained

2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend (8 oz)

1 1/2 cups shredded lettuce

1 cup seeded chopped tomato (1 large)

Crushed corn chips, if desired

Old El Paso salsa, if desired


1. Heat oven to 400°F. Spray or grease 15x10-inch or larger dark or nonstick cookie sheet. Unroll dough on cookie sheet; starting at center, press dough into 15x10-inch rectangle.

2. In 10-inch skillet, cook beef, taco seasoning mix and water as directed on package. Spoon evenly on dough. Top with chiles, olives and cheese.

3. Bake 13 to 16 minutes or until crust is golden brown and cheese is melted. Top with remaining ingredients.

Mexican Sloppy Joes


Makes 8 sandwiches


2 cans (8 oz each) Pillsbury Crescent Recipe Creations refrigerated flaky dough sheet

1/2 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef

2 tablespoons Old El Paso taco seasoning mix (from 1-oz package)

1 cup Old El Paso® Thick 'n Chunky salsa

1 cup shredded Cheddar-Jack with jalapeno peppers cheese blend (4 oz)

1 egg, beaten

1 tablespoon cornmeal


1. Heat oven to 375°F. Spray cookie sheet with cooking spray. Unroll both cans of dough on work surface; press into two 12x8-inch rectangles. Cut into total of 8 rectangles.

2. In 10-inch skillet, cook beef over medium-high heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring frequently, until thoroughly cooked. Stir in taco seasoning mix and salsa; simmer 5 minutes. Spoon about 1/4 cup meat mixture in center of 1 dough rectangle. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons cheese. Fold rectangle over to form triangle; press edges with fork to seal. Place on cookie sheet. Brush with egg; sprinkle with cornmeal. Repeat with remaining dough and filling.

3. Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until deep golden brown.

Be careful when you seal the edges of these baked sandwiches. Make sure no filling is at the pastry edges, so you get a tight seal, and none of your tasty filling leaks out!

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About Shop Cheap

Pam Dinsmore is The Bee's Community Affairs Director. When she's not working, she's shopping. The goal of this blog is to help you save time and money at the grocery store. She's pretty good at it but she can't do it alone. That's where you come in, sharing your tips and secret methods for saving money. You can either respond to the blog or email her at

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