Thursday, December 15, 2016

Sausage and Pepperoni Hot Italian Dip

Hot Italian Dip. 1JPG

Anyone who knows me know I am the crazy list lady. I have an Excel Spreadsheet for every holiday, party and get together that I've hosted since the early 90's. It's what I do. I have a weekly list that I update as I go through the week. I add items as I add recipes and I also have files for all the major holidays, Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc. I can tell you what we ate for Christmas Eve in 2001 and produce the shopping list to go along with it. It's just how my brain works. I need to write it or type it down to get it out of my head.

The process for creating a recipe is a bit different but starts the same way. I get an idea for a recipe, I jot down what ingredients I need and then I have the laptop on the kitchen table and I adjust the recipe as I go, back and forth from the stove to the laptop. Once it's out of the oven and approved, I hit the save button, write up a post and share it with all of you. Lots and lots of hours go into each recipe, not to mention the time it takes to photograph each dish, something that gets more difficult when the short, dark days of winter approach.

Hot Italian Dip

I was looking for something different to add to my Christmas Eve table. I didn't want the same old, same old so I decided to make a new dip straight from my noggin. This dip was created over the course of a few hours on a Saturday afternoon and happily devoured by my guys in about 10 minutes. That's how I know a recipe is a hit! This was definitely a hit my friends. It's got a sausage and pepperoni pizza like taste, but you still get all that creaminess and cheesiness too. Success!

Sausage & Pepperoni Hot Italian Dip
recipe from Lisa@The Cutting Edge of Ordinary
16 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1-14.5oz can petite diced tomatoes with garlic and olive oil, drained
1 1/2 cups pasta sauce
1½ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 pound of Italian sausage (sweet or hot)
20 pepperoni slices cut in half
1 small can sliced olives, drained
Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350.  Cook  the sausage in a skillet on medium heat breaking the sausage up as you cook it. If you are using sausage links, remove the meat from their casings.  Drain any grease and set aside. Place the olive oil back in the same skillet and cook the onion until they becomes soft and translucent. Add the chopped garlic in at the last few minutes. Place the onions and garlic in the same bowl as the sausage and stir to combine.

In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese and Italian seasoning together with an electric mixer and spread on the bottom of a baking dish. I used a baking pan that was a little bit smaller than a 9x13. Top with the diced tomatoes, the sausage mixture, and the pepperoni *(see note on pepperoni preparation). Continue to layer with the sauce, mozzarella, and the olives. Sprinkle with Parmesan just before going in the oven. Bake at 350 for 30 - 35 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Serve with tortilla chips, bagel chips, crusty bread, crackers, etc.

Note* - I placed my pepperoni on a double layer of paper towel and microwaved them 20 seconds to release some of the grease.

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