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Published May 31st, 2017
Take a dip into this new summer favorite
Green Chili Goat Cheese Dip Photos Susie Iventosch

Looking back over the past several Lamorinda Weekly issues, I realized we had not yet published an appetizer in 2017. With the summer months almost upon us and outdoor barbecues are just around the corner, what better way to open a good party than with a delicious starter? It's time to get your dip game on!
This dip (or spread) is made from three cheeses and an assortment of chiles and peppers. Feel free to adjust by using more or less, hotter or milder, peppers in your rendition. The goat cheese gives it an especially great flavor and the sharp cheddar gives it a bit of a bite, while the cream cheese holds it all together and gives it a nice creamy texture. Cooking the peppers makes them much milder than they are when raw, so even using a whole jalapeno would not make this too hot for the average person.
This dip is wonderful cold, and I venture to say, even better hot, so you can serve it either way. We also served it as a topping for homemade chicken enchiladas in lieu of sour cream, and that was fantastic!
Cooking Term of the Week
In the last column, I referred to "fuul," a dish very similar to hummus, but made from fava beans. This week's term "fool" is a classic British dessert, made by folding stewed or pureed fruit into a custard or cream. Traditionally, gooseberries were the choice fruit for fool, but it can be made out of a variety of different fruits. The fruit is pureed and strained and mixed with sugar before folding into the cream or custard. This is a great dessert for hot summer weather when made with berries, rhubarb or even peaches.

4 oz. soft, Montrachet-type goat cheese
4 oz. grated sharp white cheddar cheese
4 oz. cream cheese
1 Tbsp. cream or Half & Half
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 small shallot, finely diced
1/2 jalapeno, finely diced
1/2 poblano pepper, finely diced
1 Anaheim (Ortega) chili, finely diced
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Heat oil in a small skillet. Cook shallots and garlic until translucent. Add all three peppers, and cook for about 8 to 10 minutes over medium-low heat, until peppers are just cooked and tender, but not mushy.
Meanwhile, place goat cheese in a bowl with cream cheese and cream. Beat with an electric beater until smooth. Add grated cheddar cheese and cooked veggies and mix well. Stir in lemon juice.
Now, you decide whether to serve cold as a spread for crackers, or heated as a dip for chips. It is really good either way.
If you decide to serve it hot, pat the mixture into a greased ramekin or small casserole dish. Bake for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees, until cheese is bubbly and top is beginning to brown.
Serve warm with tortilla or pita chips.

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