Cinco de Mayo

According to the History Channel: Cinco de Mayo—or the fifth of May—is a holiday that celebrates the date of the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War (1861-1867). A relatively minor holiday in Mexico, in the United States Cinco de Mayo has evolved into a commemoration of Mexican culture and heritage, particularly in areas with large Mexican-American populations.

According to Time Magazine:  For many Americans, Cinco de Mayo means enjoying Mexican food and probably a few margaritas. But Cinco de Mayo, which means May 5 in Spanish, is probably one of the most misunderstood Mexican holidays.  Contrary to popular belief, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico’s independence day.  Mexican independence is celebrated Sept.16.  Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over the French forces of Napoleon III on May 5, 1862, at the Battle of Puebla.  Mexico had trouble paying back war debts to European countries, and France had come to Mexico to collect that debt.  Today, Cinco de Mayo has become more of an American holiday than a Mexican one. But most non-Mexican Americans have “no idea” about the day’s history, said Carlos Tortolero, president of the National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago.

In honor of Cinco de May, I thought I would share a recipe with you:

Frozen Margarita Pie

INGREDIENTS:

Crust:  1 cup finely crushed pretzels, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/3 cup margarine, melted

Filling:

1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

1/3 cup frozen limeade concentrate, thawed

2 tablespoons tequila, use a good tequila…better flavor

1 tablespoon orange liqueur

3 drops green food coloring, or as needed (optional)

1 cup heavy whipping cream

1 lime, sliced (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  2. Mix pretzels and sugar together in a bowl; stir in margarine until evenly incorporated. Spoon mixture into a 9-inch pie plate; press into bottom and up sides of plate to form a firm, even crust.
  3. Bake crust in the preheated oven until edges are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
  4. Mix sweetened condensed milk, limeade concentrate, tequila, orange liqueur, and green food coloring in a large bowl.
  5. Beat cream in a glass or metal bowl until soft peaks form. Lift your beater or whisk straight up: the whipped cream will form soft mounds rather than a sharp peak. Fold whipped cream into sweetened condensed milk mixture. Spoon filling into cooled crust.
  6. Cover pie with plastic wrap and freeze until firm, about 4 hours. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving; garnish with lime slices.

frozen margarita pie

Cheesy Grits

This is one of my favorite grits recipes:

Cheesy Grits

Ingredients

  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup coarse ground cornmeal
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 ounces sharp Cheddar, shredded or as much as you like; I use more

Instructions

Place the milk, water, and salt into a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Once the milk mixture comes to a boil, gradually add the cornmeal while continually whisking. Once all of the cornmeal has been incorporated, decrease the heat to low and cover. Remove lid and whisk frequently, every 3 to 4 minutes, to prevent grits from sticking or forming lumps; make sure to get into corners of pot when whisking. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes or until mixture is creamy.

Remove from the heat, add the pepper and butter, and whisk to combine. Once the butter is melted, gradually whisk in the cheese a little at a time. Serve immediately.

cheesy grits

Cheddar Stuffed Pimento Cheese Sausage Bites

Made this last week and they are awesome!!

INGREDIENTS

1 tube (3/4 pound) bulk pork breakfast sausage, mild or spicy
1/3 cup green onions, thinly sliced
1/3 cup panko bread crumbs
1/4 cup Wisconsin pimento cheese spread
1 large egg
1 cup (4 ounces) Wisconsin sharp cheddar cheese, cut into 12 cubes (1/2 inch each)
Parsley leaves for topping, chopped

COOKING INSTRUCTIONS

Heat over to 400 degrees.  Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil and coat with cooking spray.  In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except the cheddar cheese and parsley.  Mix well and divide into 12 pieces.  Wrap piece around a cheese cube and place on pan.  Bake 16 – 18 minutes or until browned and cooked through.  Place on serving tray and sprinkle with parsley.  Better served warm.

cheddar stuffed sausage balls

Southwestern Hot Dogs

This recipe is from my brother-in-law, Rick:

southwest hot dogs

Southwestern Hot Dogs

Ingredients:

1 cup finely shredded cheddar cheese

3 tbsp. salsa

1/2 tsp. chili powder

10 buns

2 green onions, thinly sliced

2 tbsp. mayonnaise

10 hot dogs

Instructions:

In a bowl, combine all ingredients except dogs and buns.  Cut a 1/2″ deep lengthwise slit in each hot dog.  Spoon 2 tablespoons of mixture into each hot dog.  Broil in oven for 2 to 3 minutes or until cheese is melted.  Serve on buns.

Mango Green Tea Smoothie

Mango Green Tea Smoothie

INGREDIENTS:
2 bags of Lipton® Pure Green Tea – use 1 1/2 cups for this recipe
3 mint leaves
3/4 cup of mango
2 cups of spinach
Juice of 1/2 lime
Crushed ice
INSTRUCTIONS
Steep 2 Lipton® Pure Green Tea bags for 5 minutes in 1.5 cups of water, then let cool.  Add 1.5 cups of cooled Lipton® Pure Green Tea to a blender, then add mint mango, spinach, lime, and crushed ice.  Blend all ingredients together until you achieve a thin liquid consistency.
Mango Green Tea Smoothie