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Authors: Rick Rodgers

Dip It! (9 page)

BOOK: Dip It!
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1 canned chile chipotle en adobo, minced
Salt to taste
½ cup sour cream for garnish
Chopped fresh cilantro for garnish

1.
Combine the chorizo and oil in a medium skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the chorizo is browned, about 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chorizo to paper towels, leaving the fat in the pan.

2.
Add the onion and red pepper to the skillet. Cook, stirring often, until the pepper is tender, about 6 minutes. Add the garlic, oregano, and cumin and stir until the garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the beans with their liquid and the chipotle pepper and bring to a simmer, stirring often. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes.

3.
Transfer 1 cup of the bean mixture to a food processor and puree. Stir back into the skillet, along with the chorizo. Transfer to a medium bowl and let cool. Season with salt, cover, and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours, or up to 2 days. (If the chilled dip is too thick, thin with water or broth.)

4.
Transfer to a serving bowl. Top with the sour cream and sprinkle with cilantro. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Texas Caviar

makes about 6 cups

MAKE-AHEAD
: The dip can be prepared up to 2 days ahead.

E
rsatz caviar, dip or spread made from small or chopped ingredients that somewhat resemble tiny grains of salted fish eggs, is an entire dip sub-category. In this case, the black-eyed peas play the role of caviar (although those would be Texas-sized fish)! I don’t think I’ve ever been to a party in Texas that hasn’t served up this kissin’ cousin to bean salsa. For tenderfoot-mild caviar with a gentle kick, use just one jalapeño. If you want a spicier dip, substitute 2 tablespoons or more chopped pickled jalapeños, and add a bit of the pickling juice to the dip to taste.

what to dip
Tortilla chips,
store-bought or
homemade (page 176) •
Corn chips
Three 15½- to 19-ounce cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
½ cup chopped (¼-inch dice) sweet onion, such as Texas Sweet or Vidalia
½ cup chopped (¼-inch dice) red bell pepper
½ cup chopped (¼-inch dice) celery
2 jalapeños, seeded and minced
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
½ teaspoon sugar
2 garlic cloves, crushed through a press
½ cup olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

1
. Mix the black eye peas, onion, red pepper, celery, and jalapeños in a large bowl.

2.
Whisk the vinegar, sugar, and garlic in small bowl. Gradually whisk in the oil. Stir into the beans. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or up to 2 days.

3.
Just before serving, stir in the cilantro, if using. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve chilled or at room temperature.

TEXAS CAVIAR WITH BACON
Just before serving, add 8 bacon slices, cooked until crisp, drained and finely chopped, to the caviar.

Ultimate Tex-Mex Layered Dip

makes 12 to 16 servings

MAKE-AHEAD
: The dip can be prepared up to 8 hours ahead.

I
am a huge fan of layered dip, which is one of those recipes that no one seems to know exactly where it came from, although it may have originated in Fort Worth in the early eighties. The original (see the variation) starts with canned refried beans. As I am always looking to make a good thing better, I don’t mind taking a little extra time to make this magnificent from-scratch version.

what to dip
Tortilla chips,
store-bought or
homemade (page 176) •
Corn chips
Black Bean and Bacon Dip (page 68)
The Best Guacamole (page 76)
One 1-pint container sour cream
Classic Tomato Salsa (page 56)
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled feta cheese

1
. Spread the bean dip in a thick layer on a serving platter. Spread with the guacamole, then with the sour cream, being sure to completely cover the guacamole. Top with a layer of the salsa, then sprinkle with the cheese. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour, or up to 8 hours.

2.
Serve chilled.

CLASSIC SEVEN-LAYER DIP
Spread two 15½-ounce cans refried beans in a thick layer on a platter. Mash 3 ripe Hass avocados, pitted and peeled, with 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice and season with salt. Spread over the beans. Mix 1 ¼ cups sour cream with one 1¼-ounce envelope taco seasoning mix, and spread over the avocado. Top with, in the following order, two 2¼-ounce cans chopped black olives, drained; 2 pickled or fresh jalapeños, cut into thin rounds; 4 scallions, white and green parts chopped; 3 ripe plum tomatoes, chopped; and 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded sharp Cheddar. Cover, chill, and serve as above.

The Best Guacamole

makes about 2½ cups

MAKE-AHEAD
: Guacamole is best served right after a 30-minute rest, but it can be made ahead up to 1 day ahead.

I
once spent a summer session of college in Guadalajara, where my Spanish didn’t improve, but I sure got a lot of great recipes. My host family taught me all about guacamole: Never make guacamole in a blender or food processor. It is supposed to be chunky, not smooth. Even more important is the right avocado. The Hass variety, with pebbly black skin, is far superior in flavor and texture to the kind with shiny green skin. Finally when seasoning, be bold with the salt, as avocados need more than you might think.

what to dip
Tortilla chips,
store-bought or
homemade (page 176) • Corn chips
3 ripe Hass avocados, pitted, peeled, and chopped
cup chopped onion, preferably white onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish, optional
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
Salt
1 garlic clove
1 ripe plum tomato, seeded and cut into ½-inch dice

1.
Using a potato masher or large fork, mash the avocados with the onion, cilantro, if using, lime juice, and jalapeño in a medium bowl.

2.
Finely chop the garlic. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt, and chop and smear the garlic on the work surface until it forms a paste. Stir into the mashed avocados, along with the tomatoes. Season with a generous amount of salt. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes to blend the flavors. (To serve later, press a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the guacamole and refrigerate for up to 1 day; stir well before serving.

3.
Transfer to a serving bowl, garnish with cilantro, if desired, and serve.

Creamy Avocado Dip

makes 2 cups

MAKE-AHEAD
: The dip can be prepared up to 1 day ahead.

C
hunky guacamole is, of course, the most authentic way to go, especially when serving it with tortilla chips. But there are times when a thick but creamy avocado dip would work better (think of crudités or potato chips), and that’s when to use this recipe. I learned it during my student days in Mexico, when my landlady served it as a table sauce.

what to dip
Tortilla chips, store-bought
or homemade
(page 176) • Carrot
sticks •
Celery sticks •
Cherry tomatoes •
Cucumber slices •
Zucchini slices
2 ripe Hass avocados, pitted and peeled
½ cup Mexican crema (see Note) or sour cream
1 tablespoon grated onion (use the large holes of a box grater)
2 teaspoons seeded and minced jalapeño
1 garlic clove, crushed through a press
Salt to taste
Chopped tomatoes for garnish
Chopped fresh cilantro for garnish

1.
Combine the avocados, crema, onion, jalapeño, and garlic in a food processor and process until smooth. Season
with salt (avocados tend to take a good amount of salt, so don’t be shy).

2.
Transfer to a bowl and press a piece of plastic wrap directly on the dip surface to keep out air and discourage discoloring. Cover tightly and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours, or up to 1 day.

3.
Stir the dip well. Garnish with chopped tomatoes and cilantro, and serve chilled.

NOTE:
Crema is Mexican sour cream, slightly more fluid than the American version. It can be found in the dairy section of Latino grocers.

Diane’s Supreme Avocado Dip

makes about 3 cups

MAKE-AHEAD
: The dip can be prepared up to 5 hours ahead. The chopped toppings can also be prepared up to 5 hours ahead, individually wrapped, and refrigerated, but garnish the dip just before serving.

M
y friend and colleague Diane Phillips and I love to swap recipes. She’s known at cooking schools across the country for her hassle-free approach to cooking, and, like many busy cooks, she is not afraid to use convenience foods. Whenever I serve this dip, a mild-mannered guacamole with ranch dressing tendencies, my guests love it.

BOOK: Dip It!
3.71Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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