When I think of food to make for entertaining, I’m more of a Lil’ Smokies and barbecue sauce kind of girl than one who spends time making fussy hors d’oeuvres. Mainly because I am kind of lazy and the thought of stuffing, say, endive leaves with some complex, layered filling makes me twitchy.
I realize, however, that some people like spending their time fussing over hors d’oeuvres in that way, and dips like this recipe serve both of us. The lazy can serve it with crackers/chips on the side, and more motivated entertainers can spend some time spreading it onto little toasts and topping with a nice chive garnish. Either way, your guests win because this dip is creamy, savory, and all-around tasty.
3 cups chopped yellow onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
4 oz. (1/2 cup) 1/3 less fat cream cheese
4 oz. (1/2 cup) reduced-fat sour cream
1 tablespoon chives, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat olive oil and butter over medium heat in a large, nonstick skillet. Add onion and garlic and cook about 5 minutes, stirring often. Add thyme and season with some salt and pepper. Stir well, reduce heat to low, and let the onions caramelize for about 35 minutes.
Check onions occasionally to make sure they aren’t starting to burn and stick to the pan, and add more oil or butter if they are. If this is happening, your heat might also be too high. After the onions are very tender, add the cream cheese and stir until it melts. Add sour cream and chives, and season with more salt and pepper if you like. Serve warm or at room temperature with melba toasts or crostini. Makes about 2 cups of dip.
Stephanie Logerot, BJ ’03, blogs about food and family at Steph Cooks.