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Queso dip: Skip the Velveeta. May 3, 2014

Posted by ourfriendben in homesteading, recipes.
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Silence Dogood here. As Cinco de Mayo nears, what’s better than an ooey, gooey, hot cheese dip for your tortilla chips? Well, how about one that isn’t made with Velveeta so-called “cheese” and a can of Ro*Tel tomatoes and hot peppers? I was horrified to discover that this was the standard recipe for restaurant queso dip, and also the standard for jarred queso (Spanish for “cheese”) in groceries.

Admittedly, I’ve never had queso dip in a restaurant or out of a jar. But the thought of consuming Velveeta orange pseudo-cheese for any reason is more than I can bear. (It’s not cheese, people, it’s so-called “cheese product.” Eeeewwww!!!!) This Cinco de Mayo, let’s skip the gloppy pseudo-cheese and go for something truly satisfying.

Checking in with my good friend Google, I found a number of recipes for queso dip that didn’t involve Velveeta. Many used shredded Monterey Jack cheese instead, or some combination of actual Mexican queso blanco or queso fresco with Monterey Jack. They typically suggest melting the cheese in a double boiler, adding minced hot peppers, and serving it up as a dip with tortilla chips.

The point here is that the dip needs to be hot, ooey, gooey, and iminently scoopable. But yowie, a double boiler! That’s a lot of work for a simple dip, wouldn’t you say? No wonder people turn to the Velveeta option and just nuke the gross stuff. No way, I say. Don’t have a double boiler? How about one of those little dip-sized slow cookers (aka Crock-Pots)? They’ll melt your cheese and keep it hot and gooey without burning. I found one at a thrift store for about a dollar, and it’s worked perfectly for years. Just plug it in, melt your cheese, add whatever you like (minced jalapenos, sliced scallions, diced sweet onion, minced bell peppers, cilantro, mix and match), even that can of Ro*Tel. Grab your tortilla chips, and dig in! The texture will be perfect as long as the Crock-Pot’s plugged in.

‘Til next time,

Silence

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