Today I have a treat for all of the Texas expats! For many years I have been on the ultimate journey to create the perfect chile con queso, a bowl of cheesy deliciousness that is often a prerequisite for any meal at any Mexican restaurant. No, I don’t mean nacho cheese. (It’s not-yo cheese. Hehe. Gets me every time.) I also don’t mean Velveeta and canned tomatoes. Whoever came up with that bastardized version of what might be my greatest joy in life should be smacked on the hand and told, “NO!”
This dip is a labor of love for me. I make it for very special occasions because honestly, it’s a bowl of cheese. There’s no way I’m walking out of there without gaining 2lbs. But who cares? To really get the most out of this recipe, I recommend getting your cheese from the deli counter. I also learned a neat trick a few months ago about determining the level of heat in a jalapeno. For a milder pepper, you want a green, smooth surface. The more striations (dry, brown, veiny looking things, like stretch marks) on the pepper, the hotter it will be. I used a rather hot jalapeno in this dip, but that is just my taste and I found that it did not overpower the cheese at all. It actually brought a really nice flavor! Check out this link for more information on choosing peppers. The same theory can be applied to watermelons too, FYI. The more striations, the sweeter it will be.
Let me know what you think in the comments!
Until next time. x
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Items used in this recipe:
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- Heat the oil in a medium saucepan on medium-high heat. Add the onion and jalapeno and saute until the onion is soft and translucent.
- Pour in the half and half and reduce the heat to medium-low. Tear your cheese slices into smaller portions and gradually add them to the pot, stirring constantly. Do not add more cheese until the previous slices have already mostly melted and combined. Add more half and half to achieve your desired consistency. I prefer mine a little thicker.
- Finish with the cilantro and serve immediately.
- Garnish with fresh pico de gallo (optional)