Guest Author - Vannie Ryanes
The combination of cream cheese, sour cream and cheddar cheese makes this Spicy Vegetable Dip special.
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
8 ounces sour cream
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
3 tablespoon green onions, chopped
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
Hot pepper sauce to taste. Start with a couple of dashes, blend and taste before adding more hot pepper sauce.*
Mix ingredients in bowl and chill before serving. Serve with raw or blanched and chilled vegetables. Chilling your vegetables after blanching will bright color back, also add firm crispness.
How to blanch, shock and chill vegetables
Prepare vegetables for blanching; scrape carrots, slice cauliflower and broccoli, cut tips from green beans, etc. Celery is great for dipping but should not be blanched, just remove the strings or remove the outer tougher surface of the celery.
Boil salted (or plain) water in a large pot. When water reaches a rolling boil carefully drop vegetables in water for about three minutes only. Have a bowl filled with ice and water ready to hold (shock) the blanched vegetables. After placing the allotted time, remove vegetables from boiling water, place them in the ready ice bath and allow to cool down fully.
Allowing the vegetables cool completely before placing in the iced water will assure crispness and bright color. Remove vegetables from ice bath onto a paper towel to drain thoroughly. Place in on bottom shelf of refrigerator on a dry paper towel until ready to serve with your dip.
*Do not so much hot pepper sauce in your quest for heat that it takes away from the flavor of cheddar cheese in this dip.
+I have always used Frank's Red Hot Pepper Sauce, but recently tried Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce, it is good, as is Tabasco hot sauce. If you use Sriracha, I recommend leaving the garlic out of the recipe.
+Try a bit of this dip on a baked potato.
+For a slightly heartier dip, add 1 slice of cooked crumbled bacon to mix. Prepared bacon bits are acceptable.