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‘4 Pretzels’ Category

  1. Baked Fontina With Garlic And Herbs

    February 8, 2013 by admin

    Fontina Dip with garlic slices, herbs, and olive oil.

    Fontina Dip with garlic slices, herbs, and olive oil.

    Today marks my return to the Dips, Balls, and Logs Blog! Woohoo! Coming soon…posts on Chili Cheese Dip, BBQ Pork Steamed Buns, and Mushroom Dip. Today, it’s Baked Fontina With Garlic And Herbs, which won my spontaneous poll on my website as the dip you most wanted to see.

    This dip is super easy, delicious, cheesy, and great if you have PMS or your drunk. That’s because it’s not really a dip at all. NO. It’s melted cheese. Let me say that again: MELTED CHEESE.

    It’s also delightful. It smells fragrant and green and if you make it, you may want to lock yourself in a room with some candles, a loaf of bread, this dip, and…well…I’ll leave the rest of that list up to you. Enjoy.




    Baked Fontina With Garlic And Herbs
    Recipe type: Appetizer
    Cuisine: Cheese, Dairy
    Prep time: 
    Cook time: 
    Total time: 
    Serves: 6
    Melted cheese that's gooey and sinful and lovely.
    • 1½ lbs Italian fontina, rind removed and cubed
    • 6 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
    • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
    • 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
    • 3 tablespoons olive oil
    • kosher salt
    • pepper
    1. Adjust top rack of the oven so that it sits about five inches under the broiler. Preheat broiler.
    2. Spread cheese into cast iron pan. Drizzle with olive oil.
    3. Mix herbs and garlic and sprinkle over cheese and olive oil.
    4. Season with kosher salt and pepper.
    5. Bake for 6 minutes, or until melted, bubbly and slightly golden.


    Simple ingredients. In fact, you don't even have to follow the recipe. Just eyeball it.

    Simple ingredients. In fact, you don’t even have to follow the recipe. Just eyeball it.


    Add the diced cheese and drizzle liberally with olive oil.

    Add the diced cheese and drizzle liberally with olive oil.


    Top with herbs, sliced garlic, and salt & pepper.

    Top with herbs, sliced garlic, and salt & pepper.


    Bake until golden and bubbly and luscious.

    Broil for 6 minutes, or until golden and bubbly and luscious.


    Broil for 6 minutes, or until golden and luscious.


    Please Pin, share, tweet, make it, eat it with others, and let me know what you think.





  2. Christmas Tree Meatloaf (aka Holiday Phallus)

    December 23, 2012 by admin

    Christmas Meatloaf

    Ah, Christmas. You know, nothing says Christmas to me like shaping a loaf into a slightly phallic, yet festive, shape. Keeping this in mind, I decided to make a Christmas Tree Meatloaf. Originally, I was going to color the mashed potatoes green, but everyone in my house vetoed that. They said plain mashed potatoes would suggest snow. (I think they’re messing with me.)

    Great thing about this: you don’t need a recipe! You just need some meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and a little bit of butter. In fact, I’ll just show you how I put it together. You don’t even need words, which is great, especially if you’re making this for dinner while drinking spiked egg nog.

    From my heart to yours, may your holiday season be like a good meatloaf: slightly kitschy, a little bit awkward, and deeply comforting.

    Here, then, the PROCESS:


    Christmas Meatloaf 1


    Christmas Meatloaf 2


    Christmas Meatloaf 3



    Christmas Meatloaf 4



    Christmas Meatloaf 5



    Christmas Meatloaf 6


    Christmas Meatloaf 7


    Christmas Meatloaf 8



    Christmas Meatloaf




  3. Jalapeño Popper Dip (#28)

    August 25, 2012 by admin

    Hello, again!! I’m back. Yes, I took the summer off because it was too hot to post blogs about melted cheese. And that takes a lot for me to admit. Anyway. There are changes coming to the blog. Not all change is BAD. Some change is…I think…good. So stay tuned for that. Until then, I’m bringing back the dips with this delicious, decadent bar treat: The Jalapeño Popper  BUT IN DIP FORM. Holy mother. Really? Really. It’s ridiculously good. In fact, it gets 4 pretzels out of 5. Maybe even 5. 4 if you don’t like jalapeño poppers to begin with; 5 if you do.




    Jalapeno Popper Dip

    From My Baking Addiction


    2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened

    1 cup mayonnaise

    (4 ounce) can chopped green chilies, drained

    4 ounces canned diced jalapeno peppers, drained (use less if your heat-wimpy)

    1/2 cup shredded Mexican style cheese

    1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese


    1 cup Panko bread crumbs

    1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese


    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray an oven safe serving dish with non-stick cooking spray.

    2. Using an electric mixer, blend the cream cheese and mayonnaise until smooth.

    3. Stir in green chilies, jalapeno peppers, and Mexican and mozzarella cheeses. Spoon this mixture into the prepared baking dish.

    4. Mix together the Panko and parmesan cheese and sprinkle it over the cream cheese mixture.

    5. Spray the Panko and parmesan with a quick spray of non-stick cooking spray.

    6. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the mixture is hot and the topping is lightly browned.



    In Technicolor


    Mix mayo and cream cheese until smooth. Make sure your cream cheese is SOFT, otherwise you’ll have chunks and nothing turns a stomach more than CHUNKS.

    Add the other stuff (except for the topping)

    Put it in a pretty bowl. Lick the spoon afterwards. The dip at this point already tastes really good.

    In separate bowl, mix Panko, Parmesan, and olive oil.

    Sprinkle topping over dip and then use paprika to make it purty.

    Bake that mofo until it’s brown and bubbly and you’re salivating.




    I want to make this again. Like right now. You could totally have a bar-night dip party and make this and the Buffalo Wings Dip, the Cheeseburger Dip, etc. We served it with crackers but it’d be great on bruschetta or, hell, slather it on a burger.



    Coming soon: The Dip Blog changes into the Dips, Balls, and Logs Blog. First up: delicious balls for entertaining. Awwww yeah.

  4. Baked Asparagus Dip (#27)

    May 25, 2012 by admin


    I wanted to celebrate the release of my new book “Foodies Rush In” by posting another dip just in time for the weekend! This week’s dip is super easy and takes advantage of all that asparagus out there. I decided to make it when a friend dropped off a ton of asparagus from her farm.

    It calls for 1 lb cooked asparagus. I like to roast my asparagus in the oven. Toss asparagus with olive oil and salt and roast for about 10 minutes. Let cool.





    1 pound fresh asparagus, cooked and cooled

    1 cup mayonnaise

    1 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded

    1 minced clove of garlic (optional)




    Preheat oven to 350. Chop off tops of cooked asparagus into bite-sized pieces. Set aside. Chop the asparagus in a food processor. Combine all ingredients and then put in a casserole dish. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until it starts to brown and bubble.


    See how easy that is? Here are the pictures of the process:

    Chop the asparagus (but save the tips)


    Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and....




    Spread in your favorite shallow casserole dish or pie plate.


    Bake and...






    This is a solid 4 Pretzels. It’s easy, uses few ingredients, and you could probably add chopped artichoke hearts for a twist. Try it with tortilla chips or crackers. And while you’re kicking back with this and a glass of wine, think about checking out “Foodies Rush In”.

    Oh! Shameless self-promotion! I know. But it IS  a foodie book.



  5. Swiss Bacon Dip (#24)

    March 25, 2012 by admin

    I found this dip randomly. I don’t know how. But I did. And I wanted it. DEEPLY. I’m happy to say that it’s durned good. Good in that deeply decadent I-sort-of-feel-ashamed-of-myself way. It’s a Rachel Ray recipe, and even though I’m not a big fan of her approach, I do like this cheesy, gooey, salty, crunchy, bacon dip. And thankfully there’s no EVOO in it (which annoys me when she says that because she then immediately says “That’s extra virgin olive oil” and if she’s trying to save time by saying EVOO, then why the hell does she tell us what it means. Just say olive oil, for crying out loud! But I digress.)





    • 8 slices center cut bacon, chopped
    • 8 ounces softened cream cheese
    • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
    • 2 rounded teaspoons prepared Dijon style mustard
    • 1 1/2 cups shredded Swiss cheese
    • 3 scallions, chopped
    • 1/2 cup smoked almonds, coarsely chopped
    • Baby carrots and a selection of spiced flat breads, cocktail sized pumpernickle  or rye breads, or sliced whole grain baguettes, for dipping


    Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

    Brown bacon in nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Drain crisp bacon bits on paper towels.

    In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, mayonnaise, Dijon, Swiss and scallions with cooked bacon. Transfer to a shallow small casserole or pie plate and bake until golden and bubbly at edges, 15 to 18 minutes. Top with chopped smoked almonds. Place dip on a platter and surround warm dip with breads and carrots for dipping.




    Well, you get your ingredients, see, and you put them in a bowl,  see, and you stir like the Commies are coming to get you and the only way to stop them is to thoroughly mix bacon, cheese, and scallions.

    Or something like that.

    Cook your bacon first. Make sure it’s crisp.


    Add all the ingredients together (except the almonds)


    Spoon ingredients into a bowl and bake until bubbly.



    While it’s cooking, chop your almonds. You can do it the old fashioned way and cut the almonds on a cutting board, but why pass up an opportunity for getting out your aggression? Put your almonds in a baggie and then pound the crap out of them with a rolling pin.




    When the dip is done, top with the almonds.






    Now, I went crazy on this. It was great. But it’s really intense. So…originally I’d give it 5 Pretzels, but then I downgraded it to a 4 because you just can’t eat a ton of it without making yourself feel bloated and gross. Still. It’s got a ton of flavor. We liked this on crackers, although bread and veggies worked too. We saved some to heat up for later, and it was still great. Kealoha used some of the filling for an omelette, and that got RAVES.

    Putting leftover dip into an omelette is pretty brilliant.

    So. The verdict: 4 out of 5 pretzels. Yum.


    I won’t say Yum-O, because that’s what Rachel says and every time she does, I die a little on the inside.


  6. Ridiculously Easy Raspberry Cream Dip #22

    March 1, 2012 by admin

    I hesitated to post this dip because it’s only two ingredients. And then I thought, that’s just plain stupid. Of course I should post it. I remember this from a boyfriend I had in college. His mom made this and served a scoop of it on angel food cake…which was a great combination. It works just as well as a dip. Think: cookies, fruit, even cake squares on a stick.




    1 container Cool Whip, thawed

    1 container sweetened raspberries (or strawberries), thawed





    Well, you, umm, put them in a bowl and mix them. That’s it.






    It’s so simple and it’s actually pretty terrific. My kids liked it, especially served with fruit kabobs. If you don’t like Cool Whip, then whip up some real cream, and fold the two together. 4 out of 5 pretzels.





  7. Crack Dip (AKA Loaded Baked Potato Without The Baked Potato Dip) #21

    February 1, 2012 by admin


    I don’t have all the pictures for this one. I made it over Christmas when I got a new camera and in my excitement, I forgot to take pictures of the step by step process. This one is so easy, you really don’t need the pictures. Basically, buy the ingredients, mix them together, wait, eat.



    16 ounces sour cream

    1 package Ranch Dressing or Dip (dry mix)

    3 ounces bacon bits (the real kind in a bag)

    1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

    ¼-1/2 cup milk (optional)


    For the Ranch Dip…you want something like this:




    Mix all the ingredients together. Refrigerate 24 hours.




    My brother went crazy over this. He stood at the table, dipped his chip in, took a bite, said “Huh”, took another chip and repeated the process over and over. It was pretty funny. Every now and then he’d ask me “What’s that dip again” and I’d tell him and he’d say “Man. That’s pretty good.” He took home all the leftovers.


    We give this 4 Pretzels. It’s not my personal favorite, but it is a crowd pleaser. You do want it to sit for 24 hours so the flavors meld. I found the dip was a little too thick, so I added about 1/4 cup of milk to get it to dippable consistency.






    And it would probably be great on a baked potato.


    Here’s the dip again with my curry mango dip. Isn’t it festive?

  8. Baked Feta with Marinara (#15)

    November 12, 2011 by admin


    from Cooking Light



    1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

    2 garlic cloves, minced

    1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano, drained

    1 (4 ounce) package crumbled feta cheese (or soft goat cheese)


    Preheat oven to 350. Combine first four ingredients in a bowl. Sprinkle feta evenly into a 6-inch gratin dish or small shallow baking dish coated with cooking spray. top with tomato mixture. Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes, or until you see the cheese is starting to bubble.



    Crumble feta in a dish you've sprayed with cooking spray.


    Mix remaining ingredients in separate bowl.


    Pour tomato mixture on top of feta and bake until bubbly.


    This is a really easy dip. The only thing you have to chop, really, is the garlic. Make sure you squeeze out the juice in the canned tomatoes, though, because otherwise it gets soupy. I’ve made this with feta and goat cheese (not together. separately.) I have to say I almost prefer the goat cheese because it’s smoother, but the feta is good too.





    Both cheese and tomatoes have that weird ‘umami’ quality, so when you eat this it’s very comforting. It’s homey. Warm. Gooey. Terrific with a glass of wine. In fact, you’ll probably feel pretty sophisticated eating this. It’s also great for winter because it uses pantry ingredients. And it’s a good dip for Christmas because, well, it’s red and white. Throw some parsley on there and Ho Ho Ho. Kealoha wanted to give it 3 pretzels, but I’m giving it 4 pretzels. Over the years, it’s become one of my quick go-to dips when I need to whip up something.




    This is best with sliced, toasted baguettes. I slice a loaf of french bread, lay the pieces out in a pan and cook for 5-10 minutes (flipping once). Check it frequently because you want the toast golden and not black. Black toast is waaaay not good.

  9. Dip #9 — Black Bean Salsa/Salad

    September 4, 2011 by admin


    The Recipe & Process


    This recipe is so easy, I’m combining the two steps. Here are the ingredients:



    2 cans Black beans

    1 ½ cups frozen corn

    1 ½ cups diced tomato

    1 bunch sliced scallions

    1 each of green, red, yellow peppers, diced


    Mix above together in medium bowl.


    In separate bowl: mix sauce.



    1/3 cup veg. oil

    1/3 cup red wine vinegar

    1 tsp Worcestershire

    2-3 tsp tabasco

    2 tsp cumin

    Salt and pepper to taste


    Pour the sauce over the salad. Salad tastes better the longer it sits. It’s good right away, but even better the next day. 



    The Verdict


    I got this from someone when I lived in Miami. A coworker of my boyfriend’s, if I remember right. That was…oh…17 years ago? Ouch.

    Anyway. It’s a terrific, subtle dip. We give this dip a 4 out of 5 pretzels. It won’t wow you with it’s flavor. It’s not that kind of dip. This one is quiet, yet seductive. You’ll keep going to this dip long after those fancier dips have had their way with you.

    In Miami, we served it with plantain chips. Soooo good. The salad is refreshing and crisp, and really good for you. I like to let it set out for an hour or so and let the flavors meld before serving it. It makes a lot so it’s great for a party. It’s not spicy because there are no jalepenos in it. Who cares? Not every salsa needs to be spicy. This is also terrific as a side salad, without any dunkables at all.


    The Dunkables


    Tortilla chips

    Plantain chips

    Corn chips

    A spoon.



  10. Dip #5–7 Layer Bean Dip

    August 5, 2011 by admin

    This is that dip you have at parties and everyone eats all of it, but you just never think of making it. And I’m so glad I finally know how. It’s freakishly easy. It’s also versatile. If you don’t like a layer, simply replace it with something you do like…like guacamole or jalapeno peppers or whatever.

    The quality of the dip will probably change with the quality of ingredients you use.


    7 Layer Bean Dip

    (With thanks to Dana and her aunt for sharing the recipe)



    1 15oz can refried beans, heated

    1 c. sour cream

    1 .78 oz pkg. taco seasoning mix

    1 c. diced tomatoes

    1 4.25 oz jar diced green chilies, drained

    1 2.25 oz can sliced ripe olives, drained

    3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese

    2/4 c. shredded monterey jack cheese

    1 jar salsa

    tortilla chips


    Spread warm beans on 10 inch serving platter. Combine sour cream and seasoning mix; spread over beans. Layer remaining ingredients over sour cream mixture. Serve with salsa and chips. 6-8 servings

    Now, I didn’t heat the beans, because I wanted to make this ahead of time. It’s great cold. I think this is a good dip to bring to a party because you can assemble it there.

    We found that the taco seasoning and sour cream was too salty. If I make it again, I’ll only use 1/2 the seasoning pack.

    We replaced the jalepeno peppers with avocado.

    Here’s the step by step process in pictures. (I know. It’s so easy you don’t need pictures, but I have a good camera, so I feel like I have to use it.)







    We give this 4 out of 5 pretzels. Or maybe we should say tortilla chips. It’s a great dip and I know it will be devoured at the next party. Next time, I’ll definitely use the taco seasoning to taste, but beyond that…it’s great. Now I can finally make this dip. It’s a little spicy, creamy, and a little bit sinful. AND you can eat a TON of it without making yourself sick, a definite dip-bonus. I should know.


    Tortilla chips


    Veggies (maybe)

    Or even tortilla shells. I bet this would be great in a burrito.



    Got any comments or have any great recipes you’re willing to share? Please either comment here, or email me at