Sunday, May 13, 2012
Tex-Mex Seven Layer Dip
Without a doubt, my favorite party food is seven layer dip. With one deft swoop of a wide-brimmed tortilla chip, you can shovel a delectable and flavor-packed bite of seven unique tastes and textures into your open mouth. Also, since there is guacamole and salsa inside, you save on repeated trips to the party table!Every family has their own version of seven layer dip, so you will definitely see many variations. I have had seven layer dips with both black beans and refried beans, with ground beef or turkey, and with plain chopped tomatoes instead of a piquant salsa. Some people use cilantro instead of scallions as their seventh layer. Others use lettuce, canned green chiles, or Mexican corn as one of the seven ingredients. In addition, you can use whatever proportions of the ingredients that you'd like, as long as no one ingredient eclipses the others.Although there is room for creativity, it is generally accepted that there are six necessary ingredients that must be included in a seven layer dip. These are: (1) beans, (2) cheese, (3) sour cream, (4) tomatoes, (5) avocado, and (6) olives. (The seventh ingredient can be almost anything you would like. Well, maybe not pasta or chocolate, but you get my drift.)This is my family's recipe.Seven Layer Dip (Salsa de Siete Capas)1 16oz can of refried beans1 4.25oz can of pre-sliced black olives1 cup of pico de gallo salsa (or 1/4 cup of jarred salsa with 1 large tomato, chopped)1 cup of sharp cheddar cheese, finely shredded1 cup of sour cream (or nonfat Greek yogurt)1 tbsp of cumin (or taco seasoning)2 scallion sprigs, chopped and with the root end removed2 large avocados, peeled, pitted, and roughly smashed4 cloves of garlic, finely mincedtabasco, to taste1 large bag of corn tortilla chips Layer a wide transparent bowl with the ingredients, starting with the refried beans (with the cumin and tabasco mixed inside). Follow the bean layer with a layer of sour cream, shredded cheese, smashed avocados and garlic, pico de gallo salsa, black olives, and finally, the chopped scallions. Use the back of a wide spoon or spatula to help you spread the creamy ingredients. Serve the dip with corn tortilla chips and voraciously enjoy the dip in front of the television and with friends.Also, instead of serving the dip in a large bowl, you can use a plate, individual custard ramekins (if they are transparent glass or plastic), or lowball liquor glasses. If serving individual portions in ramekins or liquor glasses, garnish each portion with a white or blue corn tortilla chip. This way of serving seven layer dip will result in less mess (in the dip itself), but will require the washing of many more dishes! Either way, I hope you enjoy this dip, I know I do!