SOURCE: Ortega Products

April 26, 2010 08:00 ET

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

MISSION, KS--(Marketwire - April 26, 2010) -  (Family Features) This Cinco de Mayo, make sure you're prepared to celebrate the Mexican victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Gather your family on this festive day to enjoy music, dancing and, of course, great Mexican food.

As you're getting ready for this year's fiesta, keep Mama Ortega in mind. Maria Conception Jacinta Dominguez Ortega, otherwise known as Mama Ortega, raised a family of 13 children with homemade Mexican meals every night. One hundred fifty years later her traditions still live on with great Mexican foods from Ortega.

Make some of your own family traditions with great recipes such as Pasta and Grilled Vegetable Salad with Cilantro Dressing, BBQ Chicken Tacos, Taco Casserole or, perhaps, a Frozen Margarita Pie. From tasty whole kernel corn taco shells and delicious salsas to authentic taco sauces and diced green chiles, Ortega offers a wide variety of Mexican food products to meet all of your family's needs.

 To get some new ideas on Cinco de Mayo recipes and valuable coupons, visit

Taco Casserole
Prep Time: 10 minutes / Start to Finish: 30 minutes
Makes: 8 servings

  1 pound lean ground beef
  1/2 cup chopped onion
  1 bottle (8 ounces) Ortega Taco Sauce
  3/4 cup water
can (4 ounces) Ortega Fire-Roasted Diced Green 
packet (1.25 ounces) Ortega 40% Less Sodium Taco 
  Seasoning Mix
package (12-count) Ortega Whole Grain Corn Taco 
  Shells, broken, divided
cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  Chopped tomatoes, chopped green bell pepper, sour 

Preheat oven to 375°F. Grease 11 x 7-inch baking dish.

Cook beef and onion in large skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until beef is browned. Drain and discard excess fat.

Stir in taco sauce, water, chiles and seasoning mix; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cook 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Layer half of broken taco shells on bottom of prepared baking dish. Cover with half of meat mixture; sprinkle with 1 cup cheese. Repeat layers with remaining ingredients.

Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until bubbly and cheese is melted. Serve with desired toppings.

Pasta and Grilled Vegetable Salad with Cilantro Dressing
Prep Time: 15 minutes / Start to Finish: 30 minutes
Makes: 6 to 8 servings

  1 can (4 ounces) Ortega Fire-Roasted Diced Green Chiles
  1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  1/4 cup olive oil
  1 tablespoon Regina red wine vinegar
  1/2 teaspoon Polaner minced garlic
    Salt and black pepper, to taste
  1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, cut in half
  1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded, cut in half
  1 medium zucchini, cut lengthwise into thin slices
  1 medium yellow squash, cut lengthwise into thin slices
  1 large red onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
  1 pound pasta shells or penne, cooked
  1 jar (16 ounces) Ortega Garden Vegetable Salsa
  1/4 cup firmly packed fresh basil, cut into thin strips
    Lettuce leaves (optional)

Combine chiles, cilantro, oil, vinegar and garlic in small bowl. Whisk until well blended. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.

Preheat grill to medium-high heat, about 15 minutes. Lightly brush grill grid with vegetable oil.

Grill bell peppers, zucchini, squash and onion 3 to 5 minutes per side or until fork-tender. Remove vegetables from grill: cut into bite-size pieces.

Toss cooked pasta, salsa, sliced vegetables and basil in large bowl or serving platter. Serve with dressing on lettuce leaves, if desired.

Frozen Margarita Pie
Prep Time: 15 minutes / Start to Finish: 4 hours
Makes: 8 servings

  10 Ortega Yellow Corn Taco Shells
  1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  1/2 cup granulated sugar
can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed 
  1/3 cup frozen limeade, thawed
  2 tablespoons orange juice
  1 drop green food coloring
  1 cup whipping cream
    Lime curls (optional)

Place taco shells in food processor and pulse until evenly ground.

Melt butter in medium saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat. Stir in taco crumbs and sugar until well blended. Press firmly over bottom and up sides of 9-inch pie plate.

Place in freezer until firm.

Combine sweetened condensed milk, limeade, orange juice and food coloring in large mixing bowl.

Whip cream until soft peaks form. Fold whipped cream gently into condensed milk mixture until blended. Pour onto prepared crust.

Freeze uncovered, 4 hours or until firm. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with lime curls, if desired.

Tip: To crush taco shells without a food processor, place them in a resealable plastic food storage bag and run a rolling pin over the shells until they're evenly crushed.

BBQ Chicken Tacos
Prep Time: 6 minutes / Start to Finish: 12 minutes
Makes: 6 to 8 servings

pounds prepared shredded chicken in 
  barbeque sauce, warmed (Available 
  fully cooked in the supermarket 
  refrigerated meat case)
Ortega Grande Taco Dinner Kit -- 
  includes 8 hard taco shells, 8 soft flour 
  tortillas, 1 packet taco seasoning mix, 
  1 packet taco sauce and 1 packet Land 
  O Lakes cheese sauce
1 cup Smokin' Chipotle Coleslaw 
cup (4 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack 
  cheese (optional)

Combine chicken and seasoning mix from dinner kit; mix well. Fill warmed tacos and tortillas with chicken mixture. Evenly divide coleslaw among tacos and tortillas. Top with taco sauce and cheese sauce from dinner kit. Garnish with shredded cheese, if desired.