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Published: Wednesday, 2/20/2008

Tired of Salsa? Take a Dip on the Green Side

(NewsUSA) - When the gang gets together to tailgate or when you have everyone over to watch the big game on television, you need a great snack that can bring the group together and keep the conversation going. Coming up with an original, yet quick and easy snack idea, however, can be a challenge. Dip made with avocados is an ideal snack.

That's right -- ditch the salsa and opt for a creamy dip that's easy to whip up, tastes great with chips or veggies and can be made ahead of time.

For additional flavor, opt for Mexican avocados, which are cultivated in ideal conditions and result in a creamier avocado.

Firm, dark avocados ripen in just a day or two at room temperature, but if you are not ready to use them, put them in the refrigerator, where they will last for several days. You will know your avocados are ripe when the pebbly skin turns almost black and yields to light pressure.

The following recipe for avocado dip is sure to satisfy any sports-loving crowd:

Spicy Avocado Dip

1 fully ripe Mexican Avocado (about 8 ounces)

1 cup sour cream

1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese, room temperature

1/4 cup sliced pickled jalape o chilies from a jar, drained

2 tablespoons pickled jalape o liquid from jar

2 tablespoons sliced olives, optional

Cut avocado lengthwise around the pit, and twist halves to separate. Strike pit with a knife blade, and pull to remove. Scoop out flesh with a spoon, and place in a blender. Add sour cream, cream cheese, chilies and chili liquid, and blend until smooth, adding a little more liquid if mixture seems too thick. Transfer to a serving bowl, and garnish with sliced olives if desired. Cover and refrigerate until serving time. Serve with tortilla chips, crackers or raw vegetables. Yields two cups.

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