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Celebrate Cinco de Mayo
Fun Ideas From South of the Border

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Sopes

(Family Feature) - What better way to welcome spring than with a lively Cinco de Mayo celebration for the whole family?

Many people think Cinco de Mayo celebrates Mexican independence, but in fact, festivities on the Fifth of May commemorate an important Mexican army victory. Here in the United States, celebrations often include parades, piñatas and, of course, a huge feast the whole family can enjoy.

Why are Cinco de Mayo parties so popular? Because they provide the perfect occasion to enjoy some of the best culture, music, food and activities that Mexico has to offer. Take this opportunity to teach your family a bit more about Cinco de Mayo and Mexico with these ideas for activities, decorations and food. Olé!

Activities: Having a piñata is very traditional for a Mexican-themed party, and they're available at party supply stores. Fill with candy or other prizes and let the kids have some fun! Decorations: There are many great ways to decorate for Cinco de Mayo. Mexican flags and decorations in red, white and green are very popular. Tissue paper flowers, sombreros, maracas and other brightly colored Mexican-themed items are easy to find in party stores or make at home.

Food: There are hundreds of terrific Mexican recipes to choose from that are perfect for Cinco de Mayo. It's easy to make traditional Mexican foods from everyday products like Albers corn meal and canned green chiles. Sopes, or corn meal cakes, make wonderful appetizers for a fun fiesta with kids and adults alike. Don't limit these to just one day of the year - they are fabulous year-round!

For more Cinco de Mayo recipes such as Tamale Pie or Fiesta Corn Bread, visit VeryBestBaking.com; in Spanish at MiCocinaLatina.com.

Sopes

Ingredients
  • 1 cup Albers Yellow Corn Meal
  • 1 cup masa harina flour (Mexican corn masa mix)
  • 1/4 cup shortening or lard
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 can (4 ounces) diced green chilies
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 can (16 ounces) refried beans, warmed
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar, Monterey Jack or crumbled cotija cheese
  • Topping suggestions: taco sauce, sliced pickled jalapeños, sour cream and/orchopped green onions (optional)

Preparation
    1. PLACE corn meal and flour in large bowl; cut in shortening with pastry blender or two knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Gradually add water, kneading until smooth. Add chilies; mix well. Form dough into 16 small balls. Pat each ball into 3- inch patty; place on wax paper.
    2. HEAT 1 teaspoon oil in large skillet over medium-high heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Cook patties 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown, adding additional oil as needed to prevent sticking. TOP with beans, cheese, taco sauce, jalapeño slices, sour cream and green onions.

SOURCE: Albers Corn Meal


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