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Sunday, July 1, 2012

Deconstructing Snacks

If you have ever watched Bravos' Top Chef, you had heard the term 'deconstructing'. It involves taking a popular dish, breaking down its ingredients, and using them in a different way to evoke the same flavors.

This Super Bowl there were only three of us, and my husband wanted the traditional football foods- chicken wings, tacos, pizza. Instead of that, I deconstructed those snacks and made dips out of them.

I used to make this Taco Dip all the time when the boys were home and we had Mexican night.
Taco Dip
1 can refried beans
1 cup taco sauce
8 oz. softened cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
8 oz. shredded Mexican cheese blend
shredded lettuce
1 chopped tomato
sliced black olives

Directions: Spread beans on the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Top beans with taco sauce. Mix cream cheese and sour cream and spread on top of beans and sauce. Top with shredded cheese and bake for 20-30 minutes, until bubbly. Top with shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes and sliced black olives. Serve with tortilla chips.
Taco Dip

I made Chicken Wing Dip using Frank's Hot Sauce's recipe, which is just softening 8 oz. cream cheese and spreading it in a casserole dish, mixing 1/2 cup blue cheese dressing with 1/2 cup Frank's Hot Sauce and 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella, stirring in 2- (12oz) cans of chunk chicken breast and spreading that on top of cream cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Serve with celery and carrot sticks. My son also makes his own version of this dip, but he informed me that he uses shredded rotisserie chicken, not canned chicken.
Chicken Wing Dip

I did not make my famous Pepperoni Dip, which I got from a community recipe book many years ago, but it falls under the deconstructing umbrella. Everyone loves this dip, so I'll share the recipe here too.
Pepperoni Dip
8 oz. tub soft cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tsp.  dried oregano
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper
1/2 cup pizza sauce
1/2 cup chopped pepperoni
1/4 cup chopped green pepper
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella

Directions: In a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, sour cream, oregano, garlic powder and red pepper. Spread in a 10 inch pie plate. Spread pizza sauce over top. Sprinkle with pepperoni, green pepper and green onion. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. top with mozzarella and bake for 5 minutes more.

I also made homemade peanut cups for dessert and french dip sandwiches with Johnny's French Dip sauce that we got in a lovely food basket from my parents for Christmas. It was delicious!

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups
11 oz. package of milk chocolate chips
1 cup peanut butter
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

Directions: Line a mini muffin tin with paper muffin cups. Melt 1/2 of the chocolate in the microwave for 1 minute, stir to melt completely. Spoon melted chocolate into paper muffin cups, drawing halfway up the sides until evenly coated. Cool in refrigerator til firm. In a small bowl, mix peanut butter, salt and confectioners' sugar til smooth, then put on top of chocolate. Melt the rest of the chocolate and spread over peanut butter to the edge of the cup. Chill til firm.
Homemade Peanut Butter Cups
What was your favorite Super Bowl snack this year?

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  1. Where have you been hiding these? I'm "stealing" the taco and pepperoni dips for the next TV gathering... Thanks!

  2. That buffalo wing dip is one of my all-time faves - I can't get enough of it. That said, I want to try each and every one (love the idea of deconstructing the dishes) and pb cups are one of my faves! =)