My friend and colleague Diane Phillips and I love to swap recipes. She’s known at cooking schools across the country for her hassle-free approach to cooking, and, like many busy cooks, she is not afraid to use convenience foods. Whenever I serve this dip, a mild-mannered guacamole with ranch dressing tendencies, my guests love it.
- 4 ripe Hass avocados, pitted and peeled
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- Salt to taste
- 1½ cups sour cream
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- One 1-ounce envelope ranch-style dressing and dip mix
- 3 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
- 3 scallions, white and green parts, chopped
- ½ cup shredded sharp Cheddar
- One 2¼-ounce can chopped ripe olives, drained
- ¼ cup drained and chopped pickled jalapenos
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1. Mash the avocados and lime juice in a medium bowl until smooth. Season lightly with salt (the next layer is salty and will season the avocados). Spread the avocados in a thick layer on a round or oval platter.
2. Stir the sour cream, mayonnaise, and dressing mix in a small bowl, blending well. Spread over the avocados, being sure to cover them completely. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour. (The dip can be prepared to this point up to 5 hours ahead.)
3. Just before serving, arrange a ring of the tomatoes around the edge of the dip. Make progressively smaller rings of the scallions, cheese, olives, and jalapenos, on the dip, ending with the cilantro in the center. Serve immediately.
Nutritional information is based on 24 servings and includes 1/2 teaspoon of salt.