Nancy’s Hot Dip

Nancy Says: You can use any range of heat level with the salsa, depending on your tastes.

Nancy's Hot Dip
Recipe type: Appetizer
Prep time: 
Total time: 
  • 16 oz. cream cheese, firm
  • 32 oz. salsa
  • 14 oz. black olives, sliced
  • 4 oz. green chilies, diced
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 4 green onions, finely chopped
  • 1 box Wheat Thins
  1. Depending on the shape of your serving plate, arrange cream cheese side by side or one on top of the other.
  2. Pour chilies, salsa, olives, avocado, & onions (in that order) over the cream cheese.
  3. Arrange Wheat Thins around outer edge of plate.

Photo Courtesy of Steven Lilley on Flickr

The Califunky Hot Brown

Submitted by randilicious
Serves 2


5 tbsp canola oil 3 tbsp all-purpose flour
1½ c. milk 6 tbsp Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
3 tbsp sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 egg, beaten
½ tbsp pepper ½ tbsp oregano
1 tsp paprika 1 tsp Old Bay seasoning
1 c. mushrooms, sliced 8 stalks asparagus
1 tomato, thinly sliced 4 slices of bread, toasted
1 avocado leftover turkey slices and/or ¼ lb. pork roast thinly sliced


  1. To prepare sauce, in a large skillet combine 3 tbsp canola oil & flour little by little & mix to create a roux.  Stir in flour to absorb the oil.  Slowly whisk in the milk, & add Parmesan cheese & cheddar cheese.  Stir in the egg to thicken the sauce, but do not allow to boil.  Season with pepper, paprika, & Old Bay seasoning & remove from heat.
  2. In a separate skillet, heat 2 tbsp canola oil.  Saute mushrooms in the oil until soft.
  3. In the same skillet, saute the asparagus.
  4. Preheat the oven broiler.  For each serving, put 2 slices of toast on a broiler-safe dish.  Cover toast with layer of slices of turkey/pork roast & mushrooms.  Smother each serving with sauce.
  5. Place dish in broiler until the top of the sauce in speckled brown & bubbly.  Remove from broiler, add tomatoes, & cross cross 4 stalks of asparagus (per serving) over top, & serve.
  6. For each serving, slice up half an avocado & add as garnish.

Chef’s Note: The Kentucky Hot Brown retains a special place in my heart, as I was born in Kentucky.  Of course, I had to add in more of a California flavor (and a dash of my Maryland side too) to make it healthier.

Puebla Chicken and Potato Stew

Chicken Stew Mexican Style by Lynda Giddens on FlickrAlso called Tinga Poblana de Pollo y Papas
Submitted by Americo
Serves 6-8


2 lbs. chicken thighs (with skin & bone) 6 c. water
1 large white onion, quartered 2 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves, unpeeled 14 oz. whole tomatoes in juice (1 can)
4 tsp Chipotle chilies in adobo (chopped, canned) 1 tsp dried oregano (preferably Mexican)
1 tbsp vegetable oil 1 ½ oz. dried Spanish chorizo, finely chopped (1 link)
1 lb. boiling potatoes 2 oz. queso fresco, crumbled (½ c.)
avocado corn tortillas


  1. Bring chicken, water, 2 onion quarters, & 1 tsp salt to a boil, covered, in a 4-5 qt. pot over moderately high heat.  Boil 10 minutes, then remove from heat & let stand, covered, until chicken is just cooked through, about 10 minutes.  Transfer chicken to a plate, reserving broth with onion.  When cool enough to handle, coarsely shred chicken, discarding skin & bones.
  2. While chicken is cooking, heat a dry well-seasoned small cast iron skillet over moderate heat until hot, then brown garlic & remaining 2 onion quarters on all sides, turning with tongs, about 5 minutes.  Peel garlic & transfer with onion to a blender.  Add tomatoes with juice, chilies, & oregano, then puree until smooth.
  3. Cook chorizo (spicy cured pork sausage) in oil in a 12″ heavy skillet over moderately high heat, stirring, until fat is rendered, about 2 minutes.  Carefully add puree (it will splatter & steam) & cook, stirring frequently, until thick, about 10 minutes.
  4. Peel potatoes & cut into ¾” pieces, then add to reserved broth with remaining salt.  Simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are almost tender, about 10 minutes.  Add potatoes & onions to chorizo mixture along with 2 cups broth.  Stir in chicken & simmer 10 minutes.  Serve sprinkled with cheese.  Garnish with avocado slices & warm corn tortillas, if desired.

Chef’s Note: Ricotta salata or farmer cheese can be substituted for queso fresco.  The remainder of the chicken broth not used can be saved for later use.


Submitted by Americo


4 ripe avocados, peeled, pitted, & chopped ½ red onion, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, minced 2 limes, juiced
salt & pepper (to taste) fresh cilantro, chopped (to taste)


  1. molcajete by Eporama on FlickrCombine all ingredients in a molcajete & mix to a chunky consistency.  
  2. Season to taste with salt, pepper, & cilantro.  
  3. Serve immediately with Cumin Dusted Tortillas.