Maybe not. But it is certainly a major part, especially of cultural celebrations. I’m sure most of you know that Cinco de Mayo is more a celebration by Mexican Americans of their Mexican heritage than a “Mexican” celebration. It remembers a victory of 2000 Mexican soldiers over 6000 French soldiers at the city Puebla. Mexican Independence Day, September 16, however, is widely celebrated in Mexico. It is the day in 1810 when the war started which resulted in Mexico’s independence from Spain. But hey, why pass up the opportunity for a good fiesta.
Because it is a Mexican American holiday, much of the food associated with it is of the American influenced variety. When I asked Andrea Rocha if her family celebrated May 5 in northern California she said, “Not really. Most years we don’t do anything. It kind of depends on what day of the week it falls on. If we do decide to have a party we would definitely barbecue. Probably steak, maybe chicken.”
So in the spirit of the celebration of Mexican culture, we give you recipes for traditional (mostly) enchiladas, a great bean dip, and mini tacos (the trendy item for this week.)
As always, prices are for this area and for Safeway and Fry's will require at least a Club Membership card. We try to indicate all restrictions, special conditions etc. Sprouts does not require any cards and does not have any special savings days. Sprouts does have double ad Wednesday, when you get last week’s and this week’s ad prices. All three stores have digital savings available to those with appropriate accounts, go to their web pages for details and directions. Fry’s at least will give you the advertised digital price if you state you do not have appropriate technology. Safeway sometimes has coupons which you can access digitally or clip out of the ad.
Remember that this week is the first Wednesday of the month, when Safeway and Fry’s give seniors aged 55+ 10% off on their entire order. You also might want to pick up the special monthly savings book at Safeway and Sprouts. Most of the prices and coupons in these books are good for the whole month. Especially check out the four pages of coupons in the Sprouts book. Safeway also has coupons and a sweepstake for a free vacation trip in their May book.
On Sale This Week
Fry’s will be giving 2x fuel points every weekend from May 5 thru Aug. 6. Be sure to get your Summer Fuel Points Pass—although they usually have one at the check stands. If you use the Fry’s app on your phone, you can download it and have it automatically applied.
Deal of the Week
$.77/pkg—Strawberries, one pound pkg, limit 4
$.50/each—Garlic heads OR Radish bunches
25%off—Meat & Seafood Service Counter Sale, select varieties
$4.77/lb—Beef, New York strip steak, bone in, super value pack
$1.99/lb—Chicken, Breasts, boneless, skinless
$6.99/lb—Beef Flat Iron Steak, boneless
$1.77/lb—Beef Brisket, boneless, sold whole in bag
Other Good Deals
Buy 4 Save $4 Sale—Must buy participating items in multiples of 4
$1.49/each—Fritos OR Cheetos OR kelloggs cereals OR Florida’s Natural juice, select varieties
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$1/8—Ears of fresh corn
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$.50/each—Bunches of fresh cilantro OR garlic bulbs
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$.97/lb—Pork, Shoulder roast, Bone in, sold in bag, limit 2, while supplies last
$2.97/lb—Beef, 85% lean ground
$1.67/lb—Pork, assorted loin chops, bone in, family pack
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$.79/each—Libby’s canned vegetables OR Chicken of the Sea Tuna or Sardines, select varieties
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Deal of the Week
$.88/lb—Yams OR Piñata or Opal apples OR Valencia Oranges
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$1.98/each—Watermelons, whole, seedless
$2.77/lb—Beef, Chuck Steaks or Roasts, Boneless, Arizona Grown
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$10/bag—EZ Peel shrimp, raw, medium, 2 lb bag, farm raised, previously frozen
$1.89/lb—Pork, shoulder rose, whole in bag
Other Good Deals
Buy one Get one Free—Tortillas, Sprouts Brand, select varieties, 6-8 ct
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When I was growing up in Arizona, I had never heard of using flour tortillas in this dish. Corn tortillas were always used, and that’s what I learned. The only variations I was aware of were the rolled kind, which could have a variety of fillings, but almost always included cheese, and the New Mexico enchiladas, which were sort of torte like, consisting of a stack of 3 or 4 corn tortillas, with various items in between them. The sauce was poured over the stack, and a fried egg was placed on top.
Rolled Enchiladas, Tia Cindy Style
Ingredients (We are giving proportions for 8, increase or decrease for fewer or more)
8 corn tortillas, yellow or white, the freshest you can get
2 cups grated or crumbled cheese, your choice, medium cheddar, pepper jack, Panela or Cotija
2 cups shredded cooked meat, beef, chicken, pork or turkey (or even ground beef if you want to go retro
1 medium onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced (or 4 mini sweet peppers)
1 clove of garlic, grated
1 jalapeño pepper or 1 4oz can green chili
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
1 teaspoon poppy seeds (optional)
Maybe a few caraway or anise seeds if you like and have them
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground ancho chili, or to taste
2-3 teaspoons olive oil or other vegetable oil
3-4 cups enchilada sauce (see recipe below), either home made or canned. If using canned, taste it and add extra spices, cumin, coriander, chili, etc if you think it needs it.
Brush well with oil an 8 or 9 x 13 or 14 inch glass baking dish, or whatever you have which will hold all the enchiladas. Spread a thin layer of sauce in the bottom of the dish.
In a large skillet, sautée the onions over low heat, stirring until soft. Add sweet peppers and jalapeño and cook and stir a little longer. Add garlic and cook for a minute or two. Add seeds, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, and ground chili. Cook and stir for another couple of minutes, until all is fragrant. Now turn off the heat and add the shredded meat, stir until all is well combined and coated with onion and spice mixture. I like to divide the mixture in the skillet into quarters, it helps make sure all enchiladas get a good amount of filling.
Soften tortillas; either, heat some neutral oil (canola or sunflower) on low heat in a pot that the tortillas will lie flat in, dip the tortillas in one by one as you fill them, or, brush oil on both sides of each tortilla, stack them up and heat 1-2 minutes in microwave. This will both soften the tortillas, making them more pliable and help them keep from absorbing too much sauce and getting mushy.
Line up your filling ingredients—tortillas, meat mixture, cheese, other items like olives or peppers you’d like to use. On a plate, put a tortilla. Place a spoonful or two of meat mixture (about 1/8 of available amount) down the middle of the tortilla. Add a line of cheese. Place any other things, like black olive halves, extra cooked peppers, or what have you. Roll up the tortilla around the filling. Place in the dish with the rolled line down. Repeat, lining up the enchiladas down the middle of the dish. If you have one or two extras, try to fit in on one side of the line.
When the enchiladas are all rolled and in the dish, spoon remaining sauce over the enchiladas, trying to mostly coat all with sauce. Cover dish with foil and bake in 350º F oven for 20 minutes. Remove foil, sprinkle on additional cheese, return to oven for about 10 minutes. They just need to heat up and melt the cheese. Don’t over bake or they will be dry and the tortillas will get tough.
Serve hot, maybe with a green salad, some chips and bean dip etc.
Sauce should not be too thick, more stock than tomato sauce.
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
4-5 cups chicken stock, homemade or bought
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
2 Tablespoons ground cumin
1 Tablespoon ground coriander
1 Tablespoon ancho chili powder
2 Tablespoons finely chopped onion
1 grated garlic clove
1 teaspoon salt
In a 2 quart pot, heat the oil, cook the onion on low heat until soft, add the garlic, cook till fragrant, add all spices, stir and cook for a minute or two. Will be a thick paste. Add tomato sauce and stock. Simmer for about an hour. Taste and add more salt if necessary, if not hot enough add some Tobasco. Add more stock if necessary.
There are many other ways to do these. Here are a couple that look good.
By: Lynne LaMaster
Lynne writes, Before Lewis and I were married, I had a little apartment in Boyes Hot Springs, a tiny town just north of Sonoma. Across the street was a Mexican food restaurant with the best-ever bean dip. Lewis and I used to go out together for dinner there.
My mom also made a killer bean dip, and one of her main ingredients was cream cheese.
So, I tried to combine the flavors of the two, and this is what I got.
This is wonderful as a dip, but it's also great as a serving of beans on its own, or in a wrap with some leftover chicken and some greens.
If you just want a moderate amount of dip, just use 1/2 the ingredients, still works fine.
1 30 oz can of Rosarita Refried Beans, traditonal
1 8 oz pkg cream cheese
1 4 oz can diced green chilis
1/4 cup salsa
1/2 cup chopped onions, optional
2 cups grated jack cheese
2 cups grated cheddar cheese
Choose a glass baking dish that can be put in either the microwave or the oven.
Oven at 350º
Put the beans in a glass baking dish. Cut the cream cheese into chunks and add it to the beans, add the green chilis, salsa and onions (if using). Add in half of the jack cheese and half of the cheddar cheese. Stir, and place in the microwave for 5 minutes on high.
Take out of the microwave, and stir thoroughly. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese on the top. Put in the oven at 350º for 30 minutes. Serve hot with chips or as a side dish.
Mini Soft Tacos—Street Tacos
These are great as an after school snack or for lunch with some chips and a salad. There are so many things you could use for filling. The general rule is, some protein (cooked meat, fried tofu), some cheese (any type that appeals, including vegan shreds), some greens (cilantro, arugula, lettuce, sprouts, chopped green onion tops), and something fresh with lots of flavor (salsa, pico de gallo, chopped avocado, chopped fruit, roasted peppers).
Here are three which will inspire you to make some to your own taste.
Turkey and Arugula Tacos
Ingredients for 3
6 mini corn tortillas (about 4.5 inches)
1/2 cup shredded cooked turkey dark meat (strongly recommend turkey carnitas from Sprouts deli case
1/2 cup panela cheese, crumbled (or use grated mozzarella)
1/2 cup sliced green onion tops
fresh salsa or pico de gallo
1 medium avocado, chunked
Take two mini tacos and place on a small plate or flat bowl. Put in the middle, 1/3 of the turkey, 1/3 of the crumbled cheese and 1/3 of the arugula. Add a spoonful of salsa and a few cubes of avocado. Repeat. If you want the tacos to stand up, you will have to use toothpicks to hold them together. The easiest way is to simply serve them flat and let the eater fold them.
Chorizo and Cilantro Taco
6 mini corn tortillas
1/2 cup cooked chorizo
1/2 cup grated medium cheddar cheese
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
Shrimp and Spinach Tacos
6 mini corn tortillas
6 medium cooked shrimp, 3 cut into thirds
1/3 cup grated Monterey jack cheese
1/2 cup sliced or torn baby spinach leaves
A video of Street Tacos