Saturday, July 6, 2013

July 3rd Goods

I hope you enjoyed your Fourth of July celebrations as much as we did! We had an awesome looong weekend (four days, yo!) with plenty of good food and friends and all that jazz.

I wanted to share with you what I made for our annual July 3rd party (which, 'round these parts, is the real deal when it comes to July 4th parties). Every year the host, who is one of our best friends, informs me that I'm to bring my 7-layer dip.

It's a delightful combination of all things fake Mexican, and it's absolutely delicious. Seriously.

It's always gone by the end of the night. And sometimes before that.

Really, it's the simplest thing in the world to make, so here's the rundown:

Grab yo-self some refried beans, guacamole, sour cream, and salsa. Put them in a dish, in that order.

If you use two cans of refried beans and roughly 16 oz of each other ingredient, you'll have enough for a 9x13 dish.

Over that, sprinkle some grated cheese (I totally cheat and buy the bagged stuff--again, about 12-16 oz) and some finely chopped lettuce on top.

(Every year I dither about for approximately 8.4 seconds about the order of ingredients in the dish, and then I realize that once you scoop it up on some chips the order matters notatall. So go wild.)

N.B. -- the 7th layer is supposed to be chopped olives, which I nixed this year because a) I don't like olives and b) I was cranky and in a hurry in an unfamiliar grocery store and didn't feel like hunting down olives when I'd already prowled the same three aisles 8 times looking for all the aforementioned ingredients.

So technically this year it was 6-layer dip.

My other contribution to the party was brownie mix cookies, one of my favorite quickie desserts. I always stock brownie mix because, why not? Brownies are quick, easy, and delicious, plus I can make them into cookies.

I use the Six Sister's method of turning brownie mix into cookies. There are simpler methods out there, but I love the way these turn out. Chewy and perfect.

One note: I used an 18 oz box of mix, which is slightly smaller than the box the Six Sisters call for. I used all the liquid the recipe called for, but probably could have done with only one tablespoon of water. After baking one sheet of cookies I added an extra tablespoon of flour to my dough, and the consistency was much better (not that the pre-extra-flour cookies were inedible, or even "off," it was just better after).

You can add on basically anything you want, which is another perk. I've done peanut butter, chocolate chips, and this time I used white chocolate chips.

Oh, plus? $1 platter from Target. Yes please.

Looks like a fiesta to me!

So that was our holiday! Did you do anything exciting for the 4th? Or 3rd or 5th? I'm liking this whole holiday-on-a-Thursday-might-as-well-take-Friday-too thing. Awesome.