#52NewEats :: Week 40 :: Sriracha Ranch

Sriracha Ranch

If you know me at all, you know how much I like dips.  I like to dip things in dips.  Especially, especially, especially creamy, mayo-based dips!  I do not dip fries in ketchup.  Why would I do that when I could use the excuse to ingest more mayo?!

My favorite thing to dip things into is my //chipotle mayo//.  Seriously, this stuff is amazing, and I pretty much make a batch every week or so.  But, I recently became a fan of //Just Foods Sriracha Mayo//, and when I came upon //this recipe for Sriracha Ranch//, I was totally jazzed to try it!

My verdict?  Hm.  It was tasty, but, I like thick dips, and this was thinner, like a dressing.  In fact, it would have made a GREAT salad dressing, as written.  Also, it wasn’t all that spicy; it could have used more sriracha (note how not-pink my dip is above).  I followed the recipe exactly, and as a recipe writer myself, I know I like to err on the side of less spicy for my more sensitive readers.  And, it made a large amount, that I didn’t think I would finish before it wasn’t good to eat anymore.  SO.  Final verdict is:  I would make it again; I would halve the recipe, and further halve the milk; I would add more sriracha.  😊  All in all, this recipe was a great starting point for a sriracha-based dip, which is exactly what I was looking for!  Click the link above to check it out and give it a try yourself!

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#52NewEats :: Week 35 :: Chuy’s Creamy Jalapeno Dip

Chuy's Creamy Jalapeno Dip

I don’t really know what Chuy’s is, I am assuming it’s a restaurant of some kind, all I know is that when I saw //this dip// on Pinterest it looked creamy and delicious, and those are my two favorite criteria for anything going into my mouth.

I was excited to make it for a Mexican-themed party I was hosting, but after trying it I realized it could serve as so much more than a dip.  You could drizzle this onto tacos, onto nachos (duh), on top of enchiladas… you could definitely dip veggies in it, but tortilla chips will always win in my camp.  I bet French fries and onion rings would be great dipped in this too!

This is a very versatile dip that is so easy to make.  Don’t be scared of the amount of chopped jalapenos it calls for – as long as you chop them very small, you’ll be fine.  And there’s enough creaminess to balance out whatever heat they bring to the bowl.  Also, I had read through the comments on the website and found that a lot of Chuy’s experts felt that it was a close match to Chuy’s actual dip, but that it was missing garlic.  So I made sure I added one clove of grated garlic to the dip, just guesstimating, and it turned out really well.

This is a great dip to have out at your next party, or even just to whip up the next time you feel like settling down for a day of Netflix and snacks!!

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#52NewEats :: Week 34 :: Beef Enchilada Dip

Beef Enchilada Dip

So there’s no ifs ands or buts about it – the thing that drew me in to try this recipe was the pictures on the website.  Go check them out //here//.  That cheese is so deliciously melty and the dish is so beefy and I just love Mexican food so I had to make this dish.

I had some extra jalapenos laying around so I minced one and added it with the onion.  I did not use Old El Paso brand enchilada sauce though; I find it too salty for my tastes.  I used the Frontera brand that’s in the pouch, because that’s my favorite.  They are 8oz pouches, and I only used 2 pouches, and found that to be plenty of sauce.  I simmered for a good long time so it reduced and thickened, and as I was stirring and salivating I was struck with an idea for a new recipe 😊 so recipe testing for that shall start soon!

That is probably my favorite thing about this #52NewEats project – it has really sparked my creativity with food!

I made this for dinner one night and we sure cleaned it up.  Yes, between myself and my husband I think there was only about a bowlful left for him to take to work for lunch the next day.  I did take the blogger’s advice and put a big fat dollop of sour cream in the middle (bc sour cream for life) and dotted it with some thinly sliced fresh jalapenos.  I forgot to buy cilantro, but if I’d had some, that would have made a great topping.

This is definitely a great dish to have on hand for game day – and that season is fast approaching!!

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Mexican Street Corn Dip

Mexican Street Corn DIp

I mentioned in my post for Mexican Street Corn Tostadas a couple weeks back that I was pretty inspired by that recipe and made a corn dip….thing.

Is it weird that I think the words “corn dip” just don’t jive together?  I don’t know why.  It sounds pretty redneck.  Y’ALL COME FETCH YA SOME CORN DIP!  But I’m quite the country bumpkin these days and I s’pose I don’t mind it.

So yeah – I LOVE this corn dip, and I was reminded to write this post because I’m making it TONIGHT for dinner!  You can spread this onto some tostadas, maybe even use it as a topping for tacos, or – I might try this – as a filling for quesadillas or burritos or enchiladas.  Just put this stuff on everything, it’s THAT good.

Mexican Street Corn Dip

Ingredients
1 15oz can of yellow corn, drained
1/2 can of black beans, drained (or use the whole can – I only had a half can sitting in my fridge)
1/4 cup chipotle mayonnaise (or to your preference)
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/4 cup minced cilantro
Juice of half a lime
Salt & pepper to taste
Queso fresco, crumbled, to taste
Tortilla chips

Directions
1. Add the drained yellow corn to a dry nonstick skillet and warm over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the corn starts to dry off. Add the drained black beans. Continue cooking until the corn and the beans lose some of their moisture and are warmed through, and the corn is slightly browned and toasty.

2. Remove from heat and pour into a mixing bowl. Set the bowl into the fridge to cool down the corn and black beans faster to room temperature, or a little cooler.

3. Once the corn and black beans are cooled, add the rest of the ingredients and stir together to combine. Serve with tortilla chips as a dip, or as a topping for tacos or tostadas.

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Slutty Game Food, Episode 3: Guacamole

I have a confession to make.

Until about 5 years ago, I totally hated guacamole.

I know.  Can you forgive me?

Interestingly enough, what changed my mind was going to Mexico.  We went to Cozumel for Aaron’s 30th birthday, to a beautiful all-inclusive resort, where I felt like hey, if I don’t like it, at least I didn’t pay for it.  So I tried a few new things there, one of them being guacamole.  And I felt like my mind was changed with just one bite – if this is what guacamole tasted like back in Philly, I’d order it all the time!

But we were too scared to try any guacs back in Philly.  Let’s be honest.  Philly is not known for its Mexican food, let alone guacamole.  We both thought it was gross.

Fast forward a few years to when we tried Distrito for the first time.  We were feeling adventurous.  So we ordered the guac.  And again.  My mind was changed about guacamole! Jose Garces can do no wrong.  Seriously.

On a side note, I love Distrito.  If you ever get to Philly, it should be restaurant numero uno on your list of places to eat at.

So back to the guac.  Distrito puts a lovely little snowfall of shredded Cotija cheese on top – it’s like icing on cake.  So nomzy.  And the guac is so creamy, a little bit chunky, lots of fresh citrusy lime flavor – ugh my mouth is watering now just thinking about it.

Guacamole

I set out on a mission to find a guac recipe that most closely resembles that of Distrito, and I think I found it.  I have modified this recipe from Truly Mexican – a fantastic cookbook if you are looking for a good Mexican cookbook – to make it more like Distrito’s guacamole.  It gets rave reviews every time I make it.

And what is better game food than chips and guac‼  Enjoy!

Guacamole
Servings: 4-6
Time: 15-20 minutes

Ingredients
2 ripe avocados
1/4 cup diced white onion, diced fine
1 serrano pepper, seeded and diced fine
1 big handful of cilantro, minced
Juice from 1-3 limes
2-3 tablespoons finely shredded Cotija cheese
Kosher salt

Directions
1. Make onion-pepper-cilantro mash: If you have a molcajete, add the onion, serrano pepper, a few pinches of cilantro, and a few pinches of kosher salt to the bowl. (If you don’t have one, pile everything up onto your cutting board and use a fork to mash it all together.) Mash everything together until it’s combined well. The salt will help to break down the vegetables and soften them, so add more salt as needed to get everything mashed together nicely.

2. Prepare the avocados: First, slice a lime in half, and squeeze the juice of one half into the bowl you will be mixing your guacamole in. Using the flesh of the squished lime, rub the juice around the sides of the bowl as well. Next, slice an avocado in half lengthwise, cutting around the pit, and twist the halves apart. Pop the pit out (there are many ways to do this, but I am a fan of sticking the point of my knife between the pit and the flesh and popping it out), and slice cross hatches into the avocado. Using a spoon, scoop the avocado flesh into your lime-juiced bowl. Toss the cubes around to get a light coating of lime juice. Repeat with the other avocado.

3. Make the guac: Using a fork, pastry cutter (I find this works best), or hand-held potato masher, beat up the avocado cubes until they turn into a dip-like consistency. Add the mashed onion-pepper-cilantro mix, and the juice from the other half of the lime in step 2. Add another pinch of salt and mix well until combined. Add more cilantro as desired, and more lime juice as desired. I typically end up using a lot of lime juice (from 2 limes total) and a lot of cilantro (probably about half of a bunch, minced).

4. Finish the guac: Scoop the guac into a serving bowl and top with shredded Cotija cheese. Serve with tortilla chips of course!

5. Storing the guac: If you are not serving it right away, leave the cheese off until ready to serve. For storing: If you can’t store it in the same bowl you mixed it in, then slice another lime in half, squeeze the juice into the storage bowl, and use the flesh of the squeezed half to rub the lime juice around the bowl. Scoop the guacamole into the storage bowl and press down with a spatula or back of a spoon to squeeze out any air bubbles. Squeeze a little more lime juice on top of the guac. Take a piece of plastic wrap and press it directly on top of the guacamole, sealing out all the air. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

**NOTES**
1. If you have never cut/peeled/pitted an avocado before, please do some Googling and YouTubing to see the process beforehand. Avocados can be slippery, and slippery + sharp knives isn’t always a safe combination. Also you don’t want to get an avocado pit stuck on your chef’s knife (like I once did).
2. One serrano pepper will make a pretty mild guacamole, depending on how big it is. I usually look for big serranos, and use two, for a medium-heat guacamole.

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Slutty Game Food, Episode 2: Bread Dip

You guys, this is the greatest dip ever known to man.  I’d put my life on it.

When I was a kid, my dad was into politics, and my mom was forever hosting campaign-or-something-related events at our house.  All us kids had to hide upstairs while they had all these important people over till all hours of the night.  This is one of the things my mom would make for every event.

I don’t even know where this recipe came from – whose it is, is it my mom’s? – or how I even came to try it and like it.  (I have a very clear memory of this dip sitting on a side table in our family room and me sneaking a few bites before people arrived and having to hide upstairs for the rest of the evening.)  It’s totally something I would have stuck my nose up at as a kid.  But at some point, bread dip entered my life, and ever since, it has been a part of so many events, parties, and gatherings, that now all my friends and family know what it is and get excited if I say I’m making it for something.

Bread Dip

My bachelorette party was really just a big sleepover with my sisters and my best friend.  And bread dip.
Like every New Year’s Eve in my adult life – we eat bread dip.
My sister who is the pickiest eater ever even likes it, and makes it for HER gatherings.
When I was pregnant I went through a period where I craved it and ate it for dinner four nights in one week.

Trust me when I say that this will be the fastest disappearing dip at any party or event you host!

Bread Dip

(Check the steam coming off of that dip!  That’s because when it comes out of then oven you will legit risk burning your mouth to get that first bite.)

The kicker is that it’s so simple – there is absolutely nothing complicated about it.  The only thing that sucks about it is that it takes like forever to bake, so plan ahead.  But I promise you it’s worth it.  Every second is worth it.

Here's a lovely picture my daughter took. For the record, after shooting my pictures, I dove in and ate almost all of the dip. Myself.
Here’s a lovely picture my daughter took. For the record, after shooting my pictures, I dove in and ate almost all of the dip. Myself.
Bread Dip
Serves: However many people you feel like sharing it with. There is no shame in this entire recipe being a single serving size. Well, I won’t judge you anyway.
Time: 2 hours tops; make sure you set your cream cheese out to come to room temperature a few hours beforehand

Ingredients
1 round, unsliced loaf of sourdough, rye, or pumpernickel bread
1 small baguette
1 brick full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1/2 cup full-fat sour cream
1/2 cup thick and chunky hot salsa
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Do the bread: Cut the top off the round loaf of bread and set aside, and then dig out the insides to make a bowl. Rip the insides of the bread into bite-sized pieces. Slice the baguette into rounds, and slice the rounds into halves. Lay all of the bread onto a cookie sheet in a single layer. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove and dump into a bowl for later consumption.

3. Do the dip: Change your oven temp to 450 degrees F. Mix cream cheese, sour cream, and salsa with a hand mixer until well-combined. Mix in shredded cheddar cheese until well-combined. Pour into the bread bowl, and put the bread lid back on the bowl. Wrap the bread bowl well in aluminum foil. I usually wrap once from under the bread bowl, and once from the top of the bread bowl. Bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes. (I know, sorry! That’s a long time. You’ll be ok. Go run around the block until it’s done and then you won’t feel so bad about eating the whole thing.)

4. Eat the dip: When it’s done, remove it from the oven and unwrap the foil. Take the lid off and stir it together. It will be piping hot but you will probably want to take a bite anyway. Serve on a platter with the toasted bread and take a selfie of your face the first time you take a bite. Tag me on Instagram @sluttyfoodblog and tell me it’s the best dip ever.

NOTES
1. Please do yourself a favor and use full-fat dairy when making this dip. This is not the time to cut fat and calories. I typically use Philadelphia cream cheese (IS THERE ANY OTHER KIND?!) and Daisy sour cream because it’s extra thick and delicious.
2. Hot salsa is a necessity. I love spice and can’t handle hot salsa myself, but hot salsa is what makes this dip not so bland. It’s also important to use a thick and chunky brand. I typically use Chi Chi’s.

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Slutty Game Food, Episode 1: Bagel Chip Dip

Are you guys ready for the big game?  I get excited for football season in the fall because it means I can make game food on Sundays.  I care much more about the food than about the game.  Usually.  Our Eagles aren’t the best.  But in recent years I have become more interested in football.  It’s to the point now where I am in the same room as the TV the game is on, semi-paying attention, catching the important plays, startling when my husband freaks out and screams at the TV.  Before I would hide in another room till it was all over.  His yelling can be scary!  Half the time I can’t tell if he’s happy with what just happened or not, with all the curse words and force that boom from his lungs.  But hey.  He’s passionate, and the game is where the food is.  So that’s where I am!

That’s kind of how I am with sports.  I love going to basketball games – for stadium food.  Same thing with baseball games.  We have really good stadium food here in Philly.  But it’s more about the food than the game.  I have gone to Phillies games before and spent more time out of my seat eating or in search of food, than I have in my seat watching the game.  It’s like I bought a ticket to go eat.

But anyway.  I usually like the Super Bowl, because a) game food (duh), and b) FOOTBALL SEASON IS OVER which means WARM WEATHER and my birthday ARE ALMOST HERE‼

Bagel Chip Dip would be a great addition to your Super Bowl spread.  For one thing, it’s highly addicting.  Also, you can make it the day before because the longer it sits in the fridge, the more amazingly delicious it gets.  Creamy, garlicky, tangy.  And paired with a salty, crispy little bagel chip?  Uh, divinity.

Bagel Chip Dip

Bagel Chip Dip

Bagel Chip Dip
Makes about 1 1/4 cups
Takes about an hour and a half total to make; be sure to set your cream cheese out several hours ahead of time

Ingredients
1 head garlic, sliced in half lengthwise
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 brick of cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1/4 cup milk
4-6 scallions sliced, white parts included
Salt and black pepper, to taste
Bagel chips for dipping

Directions
1. Set cream cheese out several hours before making this dip. I usually let mine sit out overnight.

2. Roast garlic: Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Take a large sheet of aluminum foil (about a foot long) and place the garlic halves cut-side up on the foil. Drizzle with olive oil. Fold the edges of the foil up to make a pouch. Be sure to fold corners and seams upwards so the oil doesn’t drip out into your oven. Roast in the oven until tender, for 45 minutes. Let cool so you can handle it.

3. Make the dip: With a regular knife (as in, not a sharp steak knife, but a blunt normal knife), dig the cloves out of their skins and drop them into a food processor. Be sure to use all of the garlic, even the cloves that are darker than others. And use the garlic from both halves of the head! Add the cream cheese and the milk to the food processor, along with some salt and black pepper to your taste. Puree until smooth. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl if necessary and continue pureeing.

4. Finish the dip: Transfer the dip to a small mixing bowl, and fold in the sliced scallions. Reserve some scallions to garnish the top of the dip. Eat immediately, or cover and refrigerate until you are ready to serve it. Personally I prefer this dip cold. A bagel chip can hold up to this dip while cold.

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