When I was a kid, I was pretty easy to please at backyard BBQs and cookouts. Hot dogs? Cheeseburgers? Potato salad? Okay, sure- fine. I just wanted to jump in the pool with my little pink floaties strapped around my arms so I would eat pretty much anything that was put in front of me just to hurry up and get it over with so I could move onto the swimming part of the day (after waiting 30 minutes post-meal, of course!)
But now that I’m an adult who loves to cook and experiment with flavors, textures, and colors on my plate- those old standbys just don’t do it for me anymore. I need some variety- even if I have to prepare it and bring it to the party myself!
I found this great nacho/dip alternative online a few days ago while searching for recipes for different and/or unique dishes to bring to an upcoming Summertime get together my friends are having this coming weekend. The use of cotija cheese, corn kernels and lime really caught my attention and I had a trial run with the recipe this past Saturday afternoon to make sure it tasted as good as it sounded (Spoiler Alert: It absolutely does!)
WHAT YOU’LL NEED:
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 white onion, minced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 cups corn kernels (fresh or thawed)
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ½ cup whole milk
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 1½ cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- Tortilla chips
- ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- ½ cup crumbled cotija cheese
- ⅓ cup sour cream
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more as needed)
- 2 limes, cut into wedges
READY? HERE’S WHAT YOU DO:
- In a medium pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 1 minute more.
- Add the corn and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
- Add the milk and cream and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the Monterey Jack cheese until it’s fully melted.
- Arrange the tortilla chips in an even layer on a platter, and pour the corn mixture evenly over it.
- Sprinkle the cilantro and cotija cheese evenly over the dip, and drizzle the sour cream across it. Sprinkle with cayenne pepper, then serve immediately with lime wedges.
- Sit back and bask in the glory of being the V.I.P. of the backyard BBQ!
The different cheeses, the cilantro, the corn and lime juice all blended really beautifully within this recipe- and the taste is a perfect mix of saltiness with just the right amount of sour for an extra tang on your tongue while you’re eating it. I shared this with family after preparing it and they enjoyed it just as much as I did- which is always a good sign!
The prep time for this dip is about 30-40 minutes- depending on how much of it you’re making- and it’s sure to be a hit at your next backyard BBQ, cookout, or beach party! I know I’m looking forward to making it (and eating it) again in the coming days!
– Ashley –