Are you guys ready for Super Bowl Sunday? I hit the grocery store yesterday and got all my ingredients for today’s Spicy Chorizo Queso Dip, my favorite slightly sweet and spicy Buffalo wings, a layered beauty of a lasagna that The Artist requested for dinner, and so much more. We are going to be feasting all weekend long!
What do you have on your menu? Do you make the same spread each year or do you like to change it up? Mine is always different, with a combination of finger foods for nibbling and then something more substantial to finish up our day. Here in California the game starts at 3:30 with plenty of pre-game programming. By halftime The Artist is going to be hungry for a “real” meal. And you can bet I’ll have it ready for him!
I have often made one of my super easy bean dips (here and here) but was inspired by a recent post by Jenni Field showcasing one of her latest creations, Spicy Queso Dip. So beautiful it had me drooling, a lovely vegetarian cheese dip. And then I saw some freshly made chorizo at the grocers and decided to take my version in a different direction. I included a vegetarian option and think they would both be great options for your weekend festivities.
If you can’t find chorizo where you live, you can also use any hot or mild sausage you like. Or heck, make your own! It’s easy, just take a look at some of these recipes from my friend Sean Timberlake’s site Punk Domestics like these samples here, here, and here plus more!
Today’s Spicy Chorizo Queso Dip has perfectly melted cheese, spiciness from the chiles and chorizo, and is a dish your gang will beg you to make over and over. Perfect for Super Bowl Sunday or any time you have a crowd gathered, it is the ultimate party appetizer. Just a couple easy adjustments make it gluten-free so everyone can enjoy!
You can dial the heat up or down by increasing the amount of chiles you use or the type. Jalapenos are fairly low on the heat index, but you can use serranos, habaneros, or even ghost peppers if you love peppery foods. And conversely, leave them out entirely and use regular chili powder and smoked paprika for flavoring. You can make it as mild as your family wants and have chiles, hot sauce, or chile powders on the side for your guests to customize their own bowls.
Have a great time enjoying the game, commercials, and entertainment!
Jane’s Tips and Hints:
Chorizo is my favorite meat to use in this dish, but you can use anything you prefer including hot or mild Italian sausage.
As with any sausage, be sure to check that there are no fillers or spices used that may contain gluten ingredients. For the best control, make your own and you can customize it to your personal tastes. And double check the chips you are serving – many corn tortilla chips have wheat added – be sure to buy a brand that is guaranteed gluten-free!
- 1/4 to 1/2 lb hot and spicy raw Mexican chorizo, casings removed if using links, crumbled (gluten-free if needed)
- 1 med onion, trimmed and peeled, finely chopped
- 1 to 2 jalapeno chiles, stem and seeds discarded, minced
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- Juice of 1/2 lime
- 8 oz Colby or Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
- 6 oz Pepper Jack cheese, shredded (for less heat use regular Monterey Jack cheese)
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1-3/4 cups half and half
- 2 tbsp fresh cilantro leaves,
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground chipotle (use smoked paprika for less heat)
- Pinch kosher or fine sea salt, to taste
- 1 (14.5 oz) container petite diced tomatoes, drained (reserve juices)
- Freshly chopped cilantro, to taste
- Chopped green onions
- Cilantro sprigs
- Corn tortilla chips - use sturdy chips (gluten-free if needed)
- Cook the Chorizo: In a skillet, cook the chorizo over medium-high heat until some of the fat has rendered and the meat is browning, breaking up clumps with a spatula. Add the onions and jalapenos, stirring to combine with the chorizo, reduce the heat to medium and continue to cook, stirring often, until the sausage is fully cooked and the onions are softened. Stir in the garlic and cook 30 seconds or until fragrant. Squeeze the lime juice over the top and stir in.
- Use a slotted spoon to transfer the mixture to a paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain. Discard remaining fat in the pan.
- Melt the Cheeses: Place both cheeses and the oil in a blender and set next to the stove. In a small saucepan (preferably one with pouring spouts like this one from Anolon, heat the half and half over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring often to avoid scorching. Immediately pour the hot milk over the cheese in the blender. Place the top on the blender with one corner propped open to let the steam escape. Place a kitchen towel over the top to protect you from burns and catch any splatters. Blend the cheese and milk until smooth and creamy, about 30 seconds. Add the cumin, chipotle, and salt and pulse a few times to blend it in. Taste and adjust the seasonings. If the sauce is too thick, add a little of the reserved tomato juices or more half and half and blend to be sure it is fully incorporated. Taste and adjust seasonings again.
- Assemble the Dip: Pour the cheese sauce into a medium microwave-safe serving bowl. Add the tomatoes, cooked chorizo, and cilantro (if using) stirring to evenly blend and distribute everything. Sprinkle with the green onions and tuck a sprig or two of cilantro in the center. Serve with tortilla chips for dipping.
- If the dip cools off, you can reheat it in the microwave in 30-second bursts, stirring after each heating, until the dip is warm and re-melted.
- For a Vegetarian Version: Replace the chorizo with 2 tbsp vegetable oil and add 1 tsp chipotle powder and 2 tsp chili powder to the onions and chiles as they cook.
- Yield: 6 to 8 servings
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