Review: Old El Paso

We have been cooking up a storm with a lovely parcel of Old El Paso goodies, and wanted to tell you about them.  We cook TexMex food fairly often, probably a few times a month, whether that's chilli, fajitas, enchiladas or a lunchtime quesadilla or bowl of nachos, so we thought we were familiar with the Old El Paso range.  But in our parcel we discovered that they have lots of new products which we were keen to try, such as their One Pan Rice Meals and Casserole Recipe Mixes.

Most of the Old El Paso packets and kits are designed to be used with meat, but offer suggestions on the back of the packet for veggie alternatives.  We made the extra mild version first as Lara tends to prefer milder food to Steve, Sophia and I.



Instead of the recommended chicken, we substituted a can of sweetcorn and one of red kidney beans, along with an onion and a green pepper, both rustically chopped.  The dish was really easy to make in just a matter of minutes, fast food at its best!  I was really impressed by how tasty the dish was, considering it was the 'extra mild' version, and it made a yummy and nutritious lunch.  The second One Pan Rice Meal we tried was the Chilli & Garlic one which we served in small portions alongside home-made bean chimichangas with salad.  Delish!

The next Old El Paso meal we made was tacos, the cute little boats which the girls love.  These were supposed to be beef, and again our substitution involved our much-loved red kidney beans, alongside some carrots, courgette, a red pepper and an onion.  I chopped the onion and gently sweated it in rapeseed oil with the seasoning mix, before adding the vegetables which had been chopped julienne style.


After the vegetables were softened a little, I added the beans and left them for a few minutes to absorb some of the flavour of the spice mix.  We served the tacos with shredded Little Gem lettuce hearts, grated Cheddar, and home-made salsa and guacamole.  They were very yummy, if a little messy to eat!  I love the tasty flavour of the spice mix they use which has a little chipotle smokiness, but not too much heat.  Lara and Sophia deconstructed theirs on the plate and ate them with a fork, each to their own!

The final meal I've got pictures for was some delicious fajitas we made when friends came round.  Again we julienned our veg, this time a couple of yellow peppers, some carrots and courgettes, as well as adding some sliced mushrooms, and what I call 'cooking olives' (i.e. ones from a jar, de-stoned).  After slow frying an onion with the spice mix, I cooked the vegetables till soft, and heated the tortillas in the oven.

I really liked the flavoured tortillas, an interesting touch, as well as the delicious flavour combination of the spice mix.  We served the vegetables at the table so everyone could help themselves and make their own fajita.  There was shredded iceberg lettuce, grated cheese, salsa and guacamole alongside to add to requirement too.  A delicious easy dinner for an evening with friends.

We also tried two of the Old El Paso relishes, the Red Jalapeno and the Corn when we made our burger towers in this post.  I'm not keen on the Jalapeno one, finding it a little too sweet for my taste, but Steve loves it.  And trying to convince Sophia to have any meal without the Corn one is proving rather tricky!  'Nuff said.

The Old El Paso range is available in all good supermarkets, and you can find out more about all their products, and get some recipe information via their website and Facebook page.