They seem to be requisite party fare. Yes, dips and spreads are easy appetizer recipes, but they don't have to be routine. Adding a twist, or making a healthy dip can create a simple, yet interesting "go-to" dish to add to the party table.
We’ve all been to a gathering where the bag of tortilla chips and jar of salsa (and maybe even some guacamole) are the centerpiece of the grazing table. How many times have you seen onion dip and potato chips? Perhaps some hosts even venture to lay out some hummus and pita chips for guests. Why? Because they are easy appetizer recipes that require very little work.
There are simple recipes for dips and spreads that go a step further, or won't sabotage your New Year's resolution to be healthy. Why not try them? That's right, be a rebel and break free from the dip doldrums. Dare to change things up a little and see what happens.
Let your mind wander to fresh ingredients and colorful spreads. Imagine the taste sensation of a veggie dip that has a hint of curry, or a baked sweet onion dip made from fresh onions and mild cheeses. Then let yourself go further, open a world of possibilities by putting just a tad more effort into the preparation.
You may not be ready to go way "out there" when it comes to dips and spreads, and let's be honest, how far can you really go and maintain good taste. In the interest of taking baby steps, here are a few ideas for you to try.
Mediterranean dip: Here's a twist on the 7-layer Mexican dip. Forget the re-fried beans, Jack cheese and guacamole.
Spread hummus in the bottom of a dish, then layer over with black beans (1 can whole, 1 can mashed). Then toss chopped cucumber, sliced black olives, and tomatoes with olive oil, lemon, and Cavender's Greek seasoning and then spread across the dish.
Sprinkle in some chick peas and crumbled Feta cheese and you have a healthy dip with lots of flavor.
Serve with pita chips – homemade or packaged. See, it's easy to get in the swing of it.
We found a couple of other healthy, flavorful dips that are sure to catch people by surprise.
Okay, the dips and spreads are important, but to make these easy appetizer recipes really soar, they need the right vehicle. Yes, the chips, breads, and crackers are vital to the success of these dishes. Here are a few simple points to remember.
- Strong flavors in your dip call for a mild cracker or chip. Mild dips can handle a little pizazz, or seasoning, in the cracker.
- Thick, hearty spreads need strong dipping tools, no wimpy, flaky chips.
- If you're going to use breads, make sure they are thinly sliced and sized appropriately. No one wants to eat an entire sandwich in one bite.
- Some recipes call for home made chips, but if you know of a packaged brand that is outstanding – use it.
There's nothing wrong with laying out a spread of dips and chips for your party, after all, they are truly easy appetizers. Just try to think of some unique offerings. Don't get caught putting out things that are all the same consistency and taste. Think color and flavor and your guests will scoop it up.