Dips

Caramelized Onion Dip

Sweet and tangy caramelized onions shine in this dip. Pair with you favorite vegetables or chips for a perfect party appetizer. 

Caramelized Onion Dip 1

A few weeks ago some friends and I stayed at a cabin in the Smoky Mountains and for dinner we put together some homemade pizzas. As topping for one we were caramelizing onions – or so we thought. As I took a turn stirring the onions I noticed that they were pretty dry and had a chalky white residue. A couple more stirs and the end of the spatula broke off. Evidently it was not a heat proof spatula and it had been melting into the onions the entire time. I have not seen a non-heat proof spatula in years and it didn’t occur to any of us to check it to be sure. Alas those onions were tossed out but we still made some amazing pizzas.

Rest assured that when I cooked the caramelized onions for this dip, I used the proper tools. Thank goodness too because this dip was so much more than I has imagined. It knocks the pants off of any dip you could buy from the grocery store. Dare I say, the best onion dip I’ve ever had.

Caramelized Onion Dip 2

One year ago: Vanilla Bean-Nutmeg Shake with Blackberry Swirl

Three years ago: Nutella Waffles with Raspberry Syrup
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Greek Hummus Dip with Homemade Pita Chips

Dig into this layered Greek hummus dip with a cream cheese-Greek yogurt layer, hummus, and chopped tomatoes, red onions, cucumber and feta. Served with homemade pita chips.

Greek Hummus Dip with Homemade Pita Chips 1

The other day I was mailing out a bill and needed a stamp. I found a sheet of old Easter stamps on my parents’ desk and sent it on it’s way. Later that day, Sherrill asked me if I had any stamps for the letter she needed to mail and I pointed her in the direction of the sheet I used earlier. They weren’t stamps, they were stickers. Stickers that looked just like stamps with the ridged edges and everything but were not legal stamps. Of course the mailman had already pick up my letter which meant my bill would likely be late by the time it was returned and properly stamped. I waited a week and finally decided that it was time to call up the credit card company to see if I could reason with them, but first I got the bright idea to check my checking account. Guess what? The check was cashed which means the post office accepted the sticker as a stamp! Glad I wasn’t the only one who was duped.

Greek Hummus Dip with Homemade Pita Chips 2

This dip may seem complicated with the long list of ingredients but is pretty easy to throw together. The hummus is pureed in a food processor, the cream cheese and Greek yogurt are blended together, and then the two layers are topped with chopped veggies and feta. The homemade pita chips take a little more effort but if you are not up for the task feel free to skip and serve with store-bought pita chips, tortillas chips or vegetables.

One year ago: Breakfast Stromboli

Three years ago: Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Cookies
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Pesto-Feta Dip with Roasted Red Pepper

This quick and flavorful dip is perfect for crackers or any of your favorite vegetables. Feta, cream cheese, Greek yogurt, and pesto are blended together and topped with roasted red pepper.

Pesto-Feta Dip with Roasted Red Pepper 2

Yesterday was the grand opening ceremony for the new pickleball courts. There was music, hot dogs, cookies, lemonade, ice cream, clowns and a lot of pickleballs flying around. But beforehand I played pickleball on the old courts and actually some tennis too! It had been a very long time since I last played tennis and it was completely disorienting. I felt like a miniature person because pickleball really is a miniature version of tennis - everything felt huge. Tennis courts are much bigger, the net is a little higher, the racket is bigger than a paddle, and tennis balls bounce a lot higher than pickleballs. Of course the worst part was realizing I am no longer as good as I was in highschool and college. Apparently not playing for a few years will have that effect, who knew? I wonder if I can keep up with switching back and forth between the two sports though. May be difficult if only for time constraints.

If you couldn’t tell I am not having a hard time enjoying all this time off post-grad school. I did start working part time at the gym to help pay the bills but otherwise I am still living the retired life. Another perk of this situation is all the opportunities to cook. If I am not cooking dinner for my parents, I am whipping up a dessert or appetizer for their friends who come over for various game-nights. Since healthy options are always welcomed with this crowd I dished out this feta dip served with veggies.

Pesto-Feta Dip with Roasted Red Pepper 1

One year ago: Wheat-Oat-Flax Buns
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Goat Cheese Spinach Artichoke Dip

Spinach artichoke dip just got even better with the addition of goat cheese. This super creamy dip is perfect for any occasion.

Goat Cheese Spinach Artichoke Dip 1

This mini road trip of mine has been a lot of fun and I am so glad I thought of doing this on my way to Rochester, NY for my friend’s wedding. The only problem is figuring out how best to divide my time. Before setting out I thought I had it all planned out but of course every stop I make there never seems to be enough time and wish had an entire month instead of just one week. Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego now? Cleveland, OH! I hope to check out the location for their Tabletop board game cafe while I am there. But in the meantime, check out this dip.

Everyone loves a good spinach artichoke dip, especially the creamy sinful ones. I once made a healthier version using Greek yogurt but now it’s time to share it’s more devious counterpart – goat cheese spinach artichoke dip. Although it’s not too terribly unhealthy the cream cheese, goat cheese, mozzarella, and milk were all essential to creating this incredibly creamy dip. I started out by adding only 4 ounces of goat cheese but ended up adding the entire 8 ounce log because I simply love goat cheese. Apparently many other people share this sentiment with me as it was quickly devoured.

P.S. Thank you to my lovely hand-model, Sherrill!

Goat Cheese Spinach Artichoke Dip 2

One year ago: Healthier Elote

Two years ago: Banana Peanut Butter Bread Pudding
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Avocado Fruit Salsa with Cinnamon Tortilla Chips

Have salsa for dessert with homemade cinnamon tortilla chips and a berry-cirtusy salsa with kiwi, mango, blackberries, strawberries and avocado. Or change it up and make it your own!

It’s tornado season, and it’s the first in 7 years where I don’t have to worry about such things because east Tennessee usually just gets the aftermath-huge rain storms (as I write this one is currently making a lot of noise outside). Oddly enough it makes me miss living in Memphis, but let me explain. Obviously the destruction tornadoes cause is not something to yearn for, I just enjoy a good storm. As a child I was terrified of thunder storms and would run into my dad’s room in the middle of the night to make me feel safe. Somehow as I got older I grew to love thunder and lightning. But when it comes to tornado season in Memphis it means it’s time for Memphis in May festivals (which I pretend is a month long party for my birthday) and that’s what I truly miss about tornado season. And I cannot wait to return in a couple weeks for my favorite festival – BBQ Fest!

But unfortunately tornadoes and festivals have nothing to do with this recipe today. So thank you for listening to my rambling and let’s just get on with it…

Fruit salsa. I know this may not be the first thing you think of when you are trying to come up with a dip for your next gathering by hang on for just a second. For starters these are not just any old tortilla chips, they’re cinnamon-sugar chips! Which makes them the perfect candidate for dipping into a fruit concoction such as this berry-citrusy salsa with kiwi, mango, blackberries, strawberries and avocado. But you change it up to include whatever fruits you prefer.

One year ago: Spring Salsa

Three years ago: Funfetti Month Recipe Round-Up
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Easy Corn Salsa & CW CorningWare Giveaway

This sweet and tangy corn salsa is as easy to make as it is to watch disappear. With sweet yellow corn, black beans, pimentos, and bell pepper, what’s not to love?

Easy Corn Salsa 1

If you’ve been paying attention, you may have spied the new CW bakeware by CorningWare in my posts this week. CW is a new line of bakeware from CorningWare that comes in an array of vibrant colors and sizes (purple, blue, green, yellow, and red & 3 quart, shallow 1.9 quart, 1.5 quart, and 20 oz.). What first excited me about this bakeware were the colors, especially the purple ;-). It didn’t hurt that they also net together for compact storage – something I battled with constantly in my apartment’s tiny kitchen.

CW_Aerial_Hero_Stack

I made a sausage and egg breakfast casserole in the blue 3 quart baker, an asparagus & wild rice casserole in the green 1.5 quart baker, and today I am sharing a recipe for an easy corn salsa displaying in the blue 1.5 quart and red 20 oz. bakers. Although this salsa does not require any oven-time, I wanted to show off that this bakeware is just as good at serving food as it is at baking. As for the salsa, the recipe is from my PhD advisor’s wife. Whenever she made it for any event and I would be found hovering over it. Under my watch, it disappeared as quickly as it was made.

What you would make in the CW bakeware? Tell me using the Rafflecopter widget at the bottom of this post and you will be entered to win your own set!

P.S. For those of you wondering, I qualified in the B1 group for pickleball. There are 5 groups starting with C, B2, B1, A2 and then A1 is the best. So I’m i the middle of the pack. I was told I could easily move up to A2 with just a little more practice. Maybe in another month if I’m still without a job…

Easy Corn Salsa 2

One year ago: Pear Yogurt Almond Cake with Cinnamon Brown Sugar Buttercream
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Baked Reuben Taquitos with Thousand Island Dipping Sauce

Irish meets Mexican in these baked Reuben taquitos with a thousand island dipping sauce. Classic Reuben flavor with a twist.

Baked Reuben Taquitos with Thousand Island Dipping Sauce

St. Patrick’s Day may be over but Reubens are good year-round, which is why you should use up any leftover corned beef that remains to make these taquitos. Oh yea you better believe I mixed Mexican and Irish into one amazing appetizer (or entree). I was inspired to do such a thing after experiencing Irish eggrolls for the first time and figured I could expand it into other food genres. Cooked corned beef is mixed with shredded cabbage and creamy swiss, then rolled into white corn tortillas to be oven-fried with a light spray of cooking oil. While they bake, whip up the thousand island dipping sauce and you’ll be ready to dive in.

P.S. Job hunt news: I had a second phone interview for the job I told you about last week! The one with the writing assignment. Overall I think it went well and enjoyed the conversation. Unfortunately I blanked and then blundered a bit over one question, but managed to compose myself and continue on without another hitch. Hopefully I will receive good news in a week or two regarding the next step in the process!

One year ago: Raw S’mores Cookie Dough Bites

Two years ago: Corned Beef with Blackberry Mustard Glaze
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Orange-Vanilla Greek Yogurt Fruit Dip

Remember the peanut butter Greek yogurt fruit dip? Well I made another dip for the fruit-dipping-lovers out there! The reason why I bring up the peanut butter one is because I made both of these dips at the same time as evident by the same fruit skewers in the background. I actually made these dips months ago when my cousin Alex got married. Which happened in early fall. Makes you wonder why I waited so long to post them. I could make up all kinds of excuses but in reality I just totally forgot about them. The pictures were on an old memory card and I was distracted by my fancy new camera with it’s brand new memory card. Thankfully old pictures don’t get stale or moldy…

…dang, I really know how to make you crave this dip.

Orange-Vanilla Yogurt Dip

One year ago: Cinnamon Apple Quinoa Parfaits

Two years ago: Beef with Barley Soup
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Captain Rodney’s Baked Cheese Dip

First things first… SNOW IN EAST TN!! We didn’t get as much as some places but it still made me happy. I think that’s the most snow I’ve seen ever fall in TN. I am trying to curb my enthusiasm however as many people’s Valentine’s Day plans may be disrupted and/or lose power. That’s just not good for anybody. But you know what is? Cheese and bacon.

Even though I am restricted to cooking healthy meals, there are plenty of game nights at which to make appetizers and dessert – hooray! I took the first opportunity to make this dip (albeit I did make a slightly healthier version) using a new found love, Captain Rodney’s Boucan Pepper Glaze. It’s a sweet and spicy sauce that can be used on just about anything such as a glaze on meats and vegetables, straight out of the bottle as a dip, or mixed in to add flavor to a recipe.

Sarah made this dip for our lab Christmas party and I nearly inhaled the entire pan by myself. It’s a cream cheese and cheddar mixture topped with crushed Ritz crackers, bacon, and Captain Rodney’s glaze. What’s not to love about that? And as part of my going away present from her (which was super amazing by the way), she included a bottle of this glorious glaze. Thankfully, the recipe only required 1/2 cup which means I get to try it with all kinds of other things. So many possibilities!

Captain Rodneys Baked Cheese Dip

One year ago: White Chocolate Cake Batter Hearts

Two years ago: Pasta with Vodka Sauce
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Spicy Cheddar Ranch Dip for One

Alright folks today is my last day in Memphis, for real. I’ve said many tearful goodbyes and there will be a few more of those today, but it’s okay because I will come back! If for nothing else other than Music Fest or BBQ fest, or one of the many other fantastic festivals that occur in and around Memphis in May. Heck it’s my birthday month, what better way to celebrate than how I’ve been doing it the past 7 years? And there’s always the chance I’ll find a job here. Or anywhere else in the country…

Moving on to what you probably care most about today: The Superbowl. However, maybe you are not gathering up with the masses for a viewing. But of course you still need some grub of course so make this Ranch dip with some added spice and cheddar because it serves one (or maybe two if you are willing to share). Mix it, dip it, enjoy it until it’s gone.

Spicy Cheddar Ranch Dip for One

Two years ago: Reese’s Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Three years ago: Homemade Taco Bell Beefy 5-Layer Burrito
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