Saturday, June 20, 2015

Tex-Mex Chile Cheese Bean Dip

Bean Dip in a Hurry

“Company’s coming… early!  I needed a quick, hearty appetizer to feed some hungry fishermen after the day’s successful fishing trip. Dinner prep was already underway, but I knew they would arrive ready to snack on something... anything. Luckily the fridge held a gallon Ziploc bag full of red beans, already cooked and left from my chili-making venture a few days before. This impromptu dip recipe blended many typical Tex-Mex ingredients, a concoction based on whatever was available in the galley. Mixed and heated in mere minutes, the zippy dip was an unexpected hit while the Capt prepared the barbecue and the group retold the day’s fish tales. An unexpected hit? yes indeed. One guest remarked it tasted better than their regular chili and they would eat it by the bowlful for lunch.

I haven’t tried it for lunch and probably won't - I like my chili chunky. Nonetheless the dip would make a great bean and cheese burrito, a peppy topping for a chili dog, or provide a tasty base layer for a dynamite tostada or quesadilla. Hmmmm, or how about slathering some warm dip on a heated tortilla, then layering some red or green salsa and a cooked egg for breakfast? Ole! Now I had better start blending another batch of bean dip.  

Tex-Mex Bean Dip
With Chiles, Cheese and More

Yields about 3 cups 
2 generous cups cooked red beans (or 2 cans)
1 poblano pepper, roasted, peeled & chopped (or some canned jalapenos)
3 tablespoons green onions, chopped
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
2 large roasted red peppers (or 1 medium jar)
1 fat garlic clove, minced (or 1 teaspoon garlic powder)
½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped (or 1 tablespoon dried)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika (pimenton)
1 teaspoon Penzeys Chili 9000 (or substitute dried chile powder) 
½ teaspoon salt
mounded ½ cup PepperJack cheese, small dice
Several splashes of Green Tabasco, more or less to taste
Place all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings and texture as needed. Spoon into microwave-safe serving bowls. Cover with plastic wrap and heat until bubbling and cheese has melted.

Serve dip with tortilla chips or fresh vegetables, or cover and hold in refrigerator.

Note: guests remarked it tastes better than their regular chili and they would eat it by the bowlful for lunch. Just sayin...

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