Mardi Gras with Bob Ross, Mondo Kayo and Pimiento Cheese Dip

Another Mardi Gras has gone off like a confetti cannon in New Orleans. There are beads in the trees. There are beads on the floor of every room of the house. Beads under my moped tires on the scoot into work each morning. What a wonderful season it was—we had a Bob Ross themed Endymion party at which I served this super addictive cheese dip with a side of roast pig to a bunch of happy trees. And like the live oak branches, we swayed and swayed.

Then for Mondo Kayo, we celebrated the bright and holy truth that there is No Place Like Home. New Orleans seems to be the one place that can simultaneously be a place that is nostalgic for while also a foreshadowing of home.

Baked Pimiento Cheese Dip

Adapted from a Dromedary ad

16 oz. cream cheese, softened

8 oz. Cheddar cheese, shredded

8 oz. Colby-jack cheese, shredded

(2) 4 oz. jars or (1) 7-oz jar diced or sliced Dromedary® pimientos, drained & rinsed

1/4 c. sour cream

3 T. canned jalapenos, chopped

1 T. hot sauce

Directions

Mix all ingredients into large bowl. Spoon into greased two quart baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.  Serve warm with tortilla chips.

Or just plain Pimiento Cheese Dip

Adapted from Food and Wine

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 jarred roasted red bell pepper, chopped

8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (2 cups)

8 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (2 cups)

4 ounces cream cheese at room temperature

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon cayenne

1 teaspoon kosher salt

In a food processor, pulse the garlic until finely chopped. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until well blended. Scrape the pimento cheese into a large bowl and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving with crackers.

Hot or cold, this stuff is TASTY. We had so much fun, but now need to rest and rehydrate and get reinspired for new costumes next year.

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