recipes

Meal Ideas 09 August 2017

Spice Up School Days

(Family Features) Busy school days demand meals that can match the pace of life. A Mexican-themed meal is a sure way to keep things festive and lively around the family dinner table.

Not only does a meal centered on Mexican-style foods let you spice up your menu, it also allows for plenty of personalization so even the pickiest of palates can be satisfied. That means less time for preparation and more time spent together.

Put a fresh twist on your next school-night fiesta with these ideas:

  • An ethnically-inspired meal is a great opportunity to encourage kids to try out new flavors and experiment with foods they wouldn't normally eat. Sample variations of classic salsas, incorporate seasonal ingredients like jicama and diced sweet peppers to freshen up your dishes or put a spicy spin on a classic Italian favorite by creating Mexican-inspired stuffed shells.
     
  • Get creative with proteins. Chicken and beef are common options, but heart-healthy fish and shrimp are also great candidates for a Mexican-style meal. Pork is another good choice for many Mexican dishes, and beans provide an excellent source of added protein, along with some flavor variety.
     
  • Mex-up your taco night. Try an alternative to the traditional corn shell with an option like Ortega Good Grains Taco Shells, crafted with artisanal blends of real corn, unique grains and ingredients baked into each shell. They're made with whole kernel corn, giving them an authentic taste and a distinctive flavor, aroma and texture.
     
  • Keep things kid-friendly and fun by focusing on finger foods. A large taco can be difficult for little hands to handle, but a street taco portion, a chimichanga or even nachos are more hands-on.
     
  • Look for fun toppings that add an extra crunch. For example, new Ortega Crispy Taco Toppers, lightly breaded slices of real jalapeno or onion, provide a bold kick and are the perfect finishing touch for tacos, salads and even Mexican-style burgers.
     
  • Don't forget dessert. No meal is complete without a sweet treat, such as a churro, flan, empanada or sopapilla. Many of these favorites can be prepared ahead of time so you can simply cook and serve for a perfect ending to your family fiesta.

Find more mealtime inspiration like these recipes, perfect for the busy back-to-school season, at ortega.com, or find Ortega on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.

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Slow Cooked "Pulled" Chicken Tacos

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 2 hours
Servings: 5

  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 bottle (8 ounces) Ortega Chipotle Taco Sauce
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 package (10 shells) Ortega Good Grains White Corn with Chia Taco Shells, warmed
    taco toppings
  1. In medium pan, combine chicken, taco sauce, chicken stock, salt and pepper, and cook on low, covered, approximately 2 hours, or until internal temperature of chicken reaches 165° F. Remove chicken from pan and shred using two forks.
  2. Turn heat to medium-high and reduce cooking liquid into thick sauce, cooking 3-5 minutes and stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove from heat and combine sauce with shredded chicken.
  4. Serve in taco shells with desired taco toppings.

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Baja Chicken Pizza

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Servings: 5

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, about 1 pound
  • 1 bottle (8 ounces) Ortega Green Taco Sauce
  • 1 can Ortega Vegetarian Refried Beans
  • 3/4 cup Ortega Homestyle Salsa (any variety)
  • 1 Mama Mary's prepared pizza crust
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 can (4 ounces) Ortega Diced Green Chiles
  • 1 bag (8 ounces) Mexican-style shredded cheese
  • 1 bottle (8 ounces) Ortega Original Taco Sauce (any variety)
  • 1 bag Ortega Crispy Onion Taco Toppers
  1. In large bowl or re-sealable plastic bag, combine chicken breasts with green taco sauce. Stir or shake to coat. Marinate at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours.
  2. Heat oven to 350° F.
  3. Bake chicken 15-20 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 165° F.
  4. Let chicken cool 10 minutes then cut into small cubes.
  5. In medium bowl, combine refried beans and salsa.
  6. Transfer prepared pizza crust to baking sheet.
  7. Spread bean mixture over dough, leaving 1/4 inch at edges for crust.
  8. Top with peppers, green chiles, chicken and cheese. Bake 10-15 minutes, or until crust is golden brown and cheese is melted.
  9. Top with taco sauce and crispy onion toppers then serve.

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Mexican Style "Totchos"

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Servings: 5

  • 1 package (32 ounces) tater tots
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 packet Ortega Taco Seasoning
  • 1cup water
  • 16 ounces shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 1 container (16 ounces) sour cream
  • 1 bag Ortega Crispy Jalapeno
  • Taco Toppers
  1. Prepare tater tots according to package directions.
  2. Heat medium skillet over medium heat. Cook ground beef 4-5 minutes until browned, using wooden spoon to break into small pieces. Add taco seasoning and water. Cook until water evaporates and sauce is thickened.
  3. Top hot tater tots with cooked ground beef and cheese, and broil in oven 5 minutes.
  4. Top with tomatoes, sour cream and crispy jalapeno toppers, and serve immediately.

Source: Ortega

Meal Ideas 13 July 2017

Summer Brunch Fare

(Family Features) When it comes to planning brunch, there really are no rules. It’s the perfect opportunity to combine your favorite flavors and foods in one delicious meal.

Warmer weather calls for putting a summer twist on brunch classics. Breakfast Tacos Al Pastor are a fresh, flavorful addition to a festive summer brunch, while this Brunch Bruschetta Bar is a gorgeous way to feed a crowd and highlight your favorite summertime ingredients. These recipes are made and served with not-from-concentrate Florida’s Natural Brand Orange Juice, made entirely from oranges grown, picked and squeezed in Florida, with no water or sugar added.

Both recipes are from the Florida’s Natural Brunch Club, a collection of brunch experts creating recipes to celebrate brunch throughout the year. Brighten up your brunch with more fresh takes on classic recipes at floridasnatural.com.

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Breakfast Tacos Al Pastor

Recipe courtesy of Half Baked Harvest
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4-6

  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 1          pound ground chicken or pork
  • 1/2       sweet onion, chopped
  • 2          cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • 2          teaspoons chili powder
  • 1          teaspoon paprika
  • 1          teaspoon, plus pinch, kosher salt, divided
  • 2          chipotle peppers in adobo, chopped
  • 1/2       cup not-from-concentrate Florida's Natural Brand Orange Juice
  • 1/4       cup water
  • 2          cups fresh pineapple chunks, divided
  • 1/4       cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/4       cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1          jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 1          lime, juice only
  • 4-6       fried eggs
  • 6-8       corn or flour tortillas, warmed
  • sliced avocado
  • feta or cheddar cheese
  1. In large skillet, heat olive oil over high heat. When oil shimmers, add ground chicken and onion. Cook, stirring often and breaking up meat as it cooks, until chicken is browned, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add garlic, chili powder, paprika, salt, chipotle peppers, orange juice, water and 1 cup pineapple. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until sauce has thickened slightly around chicken, about 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro.
  3. In bowl, combine remaining pineapple, basil, jalapeno, lime juice and pinch of salt.

To serve: Divide fried eggs among tortillas and top with chicken. Add pineapple-basil salsa, avocado and cheese.

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Brunch Bruschetta Bar

Recipe courtesy of Half Baked Harvest
Prep time: 20 minutes
Servings: 8-12

  • 1          cup basil pesto
  • 1          cup sun-dried tomato spread
  • 2          cups cherry tomatoes, marinated cherry tomatoes or diced tomatoes
  • 6-8       soft-boiled or poached eggs
  • 6-8       scrambled eggs
  • 12        slices grilled or toasted bread
  • olive oil, to taste
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 2-3       varieties of soft cheeses
  • 2          cups fresh fruit
  • 1          sliced avocado
  • 2          cups sauteed veggies, such as spinach and mushrooms
  • 6-8       pieces fried bacon
  • 2-3       varieties of prosciutto, salami or smoked salmon
  • 1          cup fruit jam
  • 1          cup nut butter
  • 1/2       cup honey
  • 1          carton not-from-concentrate Florida's Natural Brand Orange Juice
  1. On large serving board, arrange sauces and spreads. Add poached eggs, scrambled eggs and bread. Drizzle poached eggs with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Arrange cheese, fruits, veggies, meats, jams, nut butter and honey around eggs. 
  2. Pour orange juice into juice glasses for sipping.

Source: Florida's Natural

Dessert 14 March 2017

Mucho Choco Tacos

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Mucho Choco Tacos

Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Start to Finish: 40 Minutes
Makes: 8 tacos

  • 8 Old El Paso Stand 'N Stuff taco shells (from 4.7-oz box)
  • 1 (24-ounce) package chocolate-flavored candy coating (almond bark)
  • 2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
  • 2 cups sliced bananas
  • 3/4 cup hot fudge ice cream topping
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 aerosol can whipped cream topping
  • 8 mint leaves, if desired
  1. Heat oven to 325°F. Heat taco shells as directed on box. Meanwhile, melt chocolate candy coating as directed on package.
  2. Carefully dip each taco shell into melted chocolate, using spoon to get chocolate on inside of shell; hold shells above bowl to let excess chocolate drip off. Stand shells upright on waxed paper; let stand until chocolate hardens, 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. In medium bowl, mix strawberries and bananas. Divide fruit evenly into taco shells.
  4. In small microwavable bowl, microwave fudge topping on High 30 to 45 seconds or until soft. Stir in cinnamon and vanilla. Drizzle topping over fruit in shells. Top with whipped cream; garnish with mint leaves. Serve immediately.

Source: General Mills Inc.

Healthy 20 January 2017

Best Bets for Healthy Family Meals in a Hurry

(Family Features) Making the decision to eat better doesn’t mean you have to stock your fridge exclusively with carrot sticks and lettuce leaves. There are plenty of healthy and delicious meal options that will have your taste buds cheering.

Fill up your fridge

How many times have you raided the fridge, only to eat the first thing you could find? Arrange your fridge so everything at eye level is packed with nutritional benefits. The top shelf is prime space for fresh fruits, berries, vegetable sticks, string cheese and hard boiled eggs.

Keeping lean proteins on hand is another way to take proactive steps towards creating healthy meals. Lean proteins, like the protein found in soy, can help families feel fuller longer and can also help lower the chances of childhood obesity.

Pick the perfect protein

During dinnertime, entrées featuring beef, pork or chicken are often the star of the plate. However, meat proteins can supply your recipes with unwanted saturated fats and cholesterol. Instead of asking your family to forego their favorite meat dishes, try swapping out meat proteins with meat alternatives, using soy protein. Soy is a high-quality vegetable protein that is easy to incorporate into your family’s diet. It can support muscle strength and is an especially good choice for managing healthy weight for the entire family.

MATCH® premium meat alternatives provide the taste, texture and nutrition meat lovers want, without the saturated fats and cholesterol. Look for great flavor matches like ground pork, Italian sausage, ground chicken, crab and ground beef at www.matchmeats.com.

Find recipes for family favorites

Quick, easy and delicious have to be a part of every family’s meal on busy weekdays. Breakfast Burritos are sure to be a family favorite. Simply fill tortillas with MATCH® Italian Sausage, eggs, cheese, salsa and fresh herbs for a hot, tasty start to your morning. Another sure crowd pleaser is Beef Tacos. Just swap out traditional ground beef for MATCH® Ground Beef and spoon your favorite taco ingredients into soft or hard shells. Homemade Beef Sloppy Joes are equally as easy to make. This recipe is a tasty way to get your whole family fed and out the door in time for evening activities.

Once you’ve picked the perfect recipes and filled your fridge with lean proteins, like soy protein, eating well will become a healthy habit the whole family will love.

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Beef Tacos

Makes: 6 to 8 tacos

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups yellow onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh garlic, chopped
  • 1 pound MATCH® Ground Beef
  • 4 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 cups canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 jalapeno, diced with seeds
  • 6 to 8 hard or soft taco shells
  • Shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes, sour cream, guacamole, cheese, taco sauce or your other favorite toppings
  1. Add olive oil to saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes until clear but not brown. Add garlic. Sauté for one minute.
  2. Add MATCH® ground beef and break apart with fork. Sauté for 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. Add taco seasoning and cumin. Increase heat to medium/high and continue browning MATCH® ground beef until outside is crispy.
  4. Add black beans and reduce heat to medium. Add jalapeno.
  5. Serve with your favorite taco shells and your favorite toppings.

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Beef Sloppy Joes

Makes: 6

  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 pound MATCH® Ground Beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup zucchini, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 3/4 cups green pepper, chopped
  • 1 (16-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon basil, dried
  • 1 teaspoon thyme, dried
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 8 buns
  1. Heat oil in large skillet. Sauté MATCH® ground beef, onion and garlic over medium-high heat until browned.
  2. Add zucchini, mushrooms and green pepper. Cover and simmer for 5 to 7 minutes until vegetables are tender.
  3. Stir in tomato sauce, basil, thyme, salt and pepper. Simmer uncovered until most of the liquid has evaporated.
  4. Serve on toasted buns. Can freeze for future use.

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Italian Sausage Breakfast Burrito

Makes: 6 burritos

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 pound MATCH® Italian Sausage
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup green onion, chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 6 to 10 flour tortillas
  • 3/4 cup salsa
  • Sour cream (optional)
  1. In non-stick skillet, heat canola oil. Sauté MATCH® Italian sausage and break up as you cook. Cook until golden.
  2. Add whipped eggs, green onion, salt and pepper. Cook eggs through.
  3. Sprinkle with cilantro and cheddar cheese.
  4. Fill tortillas with egg mixture, spoon salsa over filling and wrap. Serve with side of sour cream.
Main Dishes 06 December 2016

Exploring a Culinary Classic

Endless possibilities with potatoes

(Family Features) Delicious and nutritious, it’s no wonder potatoes are a menu staple for many. Everyone craves meal variety, and potatoes offer a perfect canvas to inspire new flavor exploration so you can enjoy something different every day. From russets, reds, yellows, whites and purples to petites, fingerlings and more, there are multiple varieties to keep dishes interesting.

You might be used to preparing this kitchen staple mashed, baked or fried, but these inventive recipes show how easy it is to incorporate flavors and techniques to create new potato dishes for any meal of the day in 30 minutes or less.

Find more meal ideas featuring a variety of potato preparations at PotatoGoodness.com/explore.

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Fiesta Potato Smashers

Yield: 8
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes

  • 5 small yellow potatoes
  • 5 small red potatoes or potato of your choice
  • 1 pint sweet mini peppers (red, orange and yellow)
  • cooking spray
  • 4 tablespoons fat-free sour cream or fat-free Greek yogurt (optional)
  • 8 sprigs cilantro, picked from stems
  • salt, to taste
  • chili powder, to taste
  • freshly ground pepper, to taste
  1. Place whole potatoes into microwave-safe, covered dish.
  2. Microwave on high 3-4 minutes.
  3. While potatoes are cooking, cut mini peppers into 1/4-inch slices. Spray nonstick pan with cooking spray and heat to medium. Add peppers and saute until they start to brown. Remove from pan and set aside.
  4. Remove potatoes from microwave and with layer of paper towels covering each potato, smash on cutting board until 1 3/4-inch thick.
  5. Spray saute pan with cooking spray, heat on high and add smashed potatoes. Cook 1-2 minutes until potatoes start to brown.
  6. On plate, place potatoes and layer with sour cream or yogurt, if desired, peppers and cilantro. Dust with salt, chili powder and pepper, to taste. Serve warm.

Nutritional information per serving: 50 calories; 350 mg sodium; 0.7% vitamin C; 1 g fiber; 1 g protein; 293 mg potassium.

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Steak and Potato Tacos with Poblano Chiles

Yield: 12
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2 poblano chiles, stemmed, seeded and sliced
  • 12 ounces white potatoes, quartered lengthwise then cut crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 1 flank steak (12 ounces)
  • garlic powder
  • chili powder
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 12 corn tortillas (6 inches each)
  • chopped fresh cilantro
  • pico de gallo salsa
  • hot sauce
  1. In heavy, large nonstick skillet, heat 1/2 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and chiles and saute until tender, about 10 minutes.
  2. Transfer onion mixture to bowl. In same skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Add potatoes and saute until golden brown and tender, about 12 minutes. Return onion mixture to skillet with potatoes and keep warm.
  3. Sprinkle both sides of steak generously with garlic powder, chili powder, salt and pepper. In heavy, large skillet, heat remaining oil over medium-high heat. Add steak and cook until browned on both sides, turning once, about 8 minutes total for medium-rare. Transfer steak to cutting board; let rest 5 minutes.
  4. While steak rests, heat tortillas on griddle or over gas flame until warm, turning frequently with tongs.
  5. Thinly slice steak. Top tortillas with steak and potato mixture; sprinkle with cilantro.
    Serve with pico de gallo and/or hot sauce.

Nutritional information per serving: 167.9 calories; 6.3 g fat; 13 mg cholesterol; 19.1 mg sodium; 6.8% vitamin C; 20.9 g carbohydrates; 2.5 g fiber; 7.1 g protein; 147.4 mg potassium.

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Potato Prosciutto Waffles

Yield: 6
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes

  • 1/4 pound thinly sliced prosciutto
  • 3 medium russet potatoes (or 3 cups mashed potatoes)
  • 1 teaspoon salt, plus additional for salting water
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and evenly lay prosciutto on paper. Bake 10-15 minutes until prosciutto is crispy. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
  3. Peel and cube potatoes. Place in pot of salted water and bring to boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to rapid simmer and cook until potatoes are fork tender, about 10 minutes. Strain potatoes from water and transfer to large bowl. Mash potatoes with fork or potato masher.
  4. Add milk, butter, eggs, cheese and thyme to potatoes. Stir to combine.
  5. In separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper. Add to potato mixture and stir until just combined. Crumble prosciutto and fold it into batter.
  6. Heat waffle iron. If required, grease with cooking spray.
  7. Spoon about 1 cup batter onto waffle iron and cook according to iron’s instructions until waffles are golden, about 4 minutes. Keep waffles warm in 200 F oven until all waffles are cooked and ready to serve.
  8. Serve with touch of butter, sour cream or poached or fried egg.

Nutritional information per serving: 332 calories; 16 g fat; 109 mg cholesterol; 1,138 mg sodium; 13% vitamin C; 32 g carbohydrates; 3 g fiber; 15 g protein; 653 mg potassium.

Source: Potatoes USA

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