An easy cheese dip with feta cheese, spicy tomato sauce and lots of fresh herbs!
Pigeon Forge, TN reminds me of one, epic street carni. Don’t get me wrong, it is certainly fun and entertaining but it also sends me into sensory overload. It’s just one tourist attraction after another for miles and miles.
Everywhere you look it’s hillbilly golf, go-carts, random dinosaur roller coasters, year round Christmas shops, ferris wheels and slides. Sign after sign is beckoning you to see the stories of the Bible, talking dogs, country singers, lumberjacks, Elvis and wax figures. Sites, sounds and smells abound. The tourists and their cars are just as plentiful.
But at the end of it all you look around and see the wonders of nature; between the noble Appalachian mountains, the clear flowing streams and the untouched forests. This area is such a contradiction between the sensationalized and the sublime. Somehow it’s altogether irresistible.
On our recent trip to Tennessee, we discovered that there is more to this vacation hot spot than funnel cakes and fudge. We found a restaurant off the beaten path that served up the most delicious feta cheese dip. It took me a few months, but I think I have been able to recreate that warm cheese dip at home!
I started with a block of feta cheese that I placed in my baking dish. I combined jarred arrabbiata sauce ( a spiced up tomato sauce) with fresh garlic and poured it over my feta. Leftover homemade marinara sauce works well too!
I added a bit more spice with red pepper flakes and then baked this appetizer for 20 minutes. I sprinkled fresh oregano, basil and parsley and served it with Blue Diamond Almond Nut Thins.
The light, crispy , low-sodium crackers held up to the feta and tomato dip. The flavor from the fresh herbs and the garlic really popped and helped disguise the fact that the tomatoes came from a jar.
The feta cheese does not melt, just softens and intensifies in flavor. This is one appetizer recipe that is truly sensational AND sublime!
- 1 8 oz block of feta cheese
- 1 cup arrabbiata sauce
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Spray a small baking dish with non stick spray. Place feta on baking dish. Combine sauce and garlic. Pour around and over the feta cheese. Sprinkle cheese with crushed red pepper pepper flakes. Bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove feta from oven and top with fresh herbs. Serve immediately.
Nutrition InformationYield 12 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 63Total Fat 4gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 1gCholesterol 17mgSodium 270mgCarbohydrates 3gFiber 1gSugar 2gProtein 3g
Disclosure: I received compensation from Blue Diamond Nut Thins for recipe development purposes. All opinions are my own. For more Blue Diamond recipes, click here.