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This version of bean dip a delicious spread

Apr. 11, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

I am asked quite a lot what my favorite meal to make is. It wasn't until I'd replied -- until I saw the strange look on this last girl's face -- that I realized they all expected a fancier dish. Something more exciting or maybe even traditional. More complicated, perhaps.

But no.

"Savory dips," I told her sincerely.

It's kind of my thing. Granted, cool it is not. But downright delicious? That it is. I suspect it is that dips and grazing on such is the exact flavor of my entire adolescence. It's as much a part of my youth as stirrup pants, big oversized sweaters and hair that never quite relented to straightening or taming.

And so, like my style (and my hair) I embraced them lovingly and decided to improve them with quick fixes that don't really change their core, but improve the heck out of their flavor.

This version of bean dip is just fantastic. It's laced with thyme, oregano, sour cream and cheese -- making each bite savory and delicious. If you're a grazer like me, or you just need a new addition to a spread for a fabulous gathering, try this version you can serve with chips, crusty bread or vegetables.

Bean Dip

1 can of refried pinto beans

2 cloves garlic

1/2 tsp. dried thyme

1/8 tsp. oregano

1/2 cup sour cream

3 oz. softened cream cheese

1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1/2 cup shredded pepper Jack cheese

1 tsp. vinegar

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/2 cup chopped cilantro

chopped green onions and tomatoes for garnish

In a food processor, place all the ingredients and blend until smooth. Pour into an 8x8 baking dish and bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

Janet McCormick is the author of "10-Minute Meals" and owner of Let's Eat in Huntington. She lives in Lawrence County, Ohio. She can be reached at 304-654-2003 or www.10-minutemeals.com.