Six Layers and a Chip Dip

Scoop up beans, cheese and avocados in this delicious dip.

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Southwestern Dip Serves Up Crowd-Pleasing Hotness

Ingredients:

2 cloves garlic
2 tsp. kosher salt
1(15-oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15-oz.) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. water
1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups low-fat shredded cheddar
2 ripe avocados, preferably Hass
1 jalapeño, stemmed, finely chopped, (with seeds for more heat)
2 cups chopped romaine lettuce
1-1/2 cups nonfat yogurt, preferably Greek
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, leaves and some stems, roughly chopped, plus more for garnish
3 ripe medium tomatoes, diced
5 scallions (white and green), thinly sliced
Baked tortilla chips, for dipping

Preparation:

On a cutting board, smash the garlic cloves, sprinkle with one teaspoon of the salt, and, with the flat side of a large knife, mash and smear the mixture to a coarse paste. Put the garlic, beans, chili powder, water and olive oil in the bowl of a food processor and blend until smooth. Spread in the bottom of a two-quart casserole or gratin dish, or in individually-sized dishes, as desired.

Scatter the cheese over the beans. Halve and seed the avocados, then mash with the jalapeno and another teaspoon of salt in a small bowl. Spread a layer of the avocado over the cheese, and then scatter the lettuce on top.

Mix the yogurt with the cilantro and then spread over the lettuce. Add a layer of tomatoes and finally scatter the scallions on top. Chill until ready to serve. Garnish with a few cilantro sprigs and serve with baked chips.

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

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