This creamy roasted tomato dip is the perfect quick and simple make-ahead party appetizer!
Are you looking forward to the Kentucky Derby next week? I’m not exactly into horse racing, but I always like to watch. It reminds me of when I was a little girl and my mom showed me National Velvet for the first time. I must have been 9 or 10 years old, and I can remember so clearly curling up with her on our living room couch in front of the TV. For a brief period after that, I was obsessed with having my own horse and learning to ride like Elizabeth Taylor.
Also, I love all the foods associated with the Kentucky Derby! Pimento cheese, pralines, Derby pie, and of course a mint julep to wash it all down. This creamy roasted tomato dip isn’t technically a Kentucky specialty, but it does make me think of the South. There is something about the savory roasted tomatoes, tangy cheese, and hint of smoky spice…whenever I eat it, I feel like I should be swinging on a front porch with a frosty glass of sweet tea.
This recipe is adapted from one of my favorite seasonal cookbooks, Summer on a Plate by Anna Pump. Anna owns a specialty food shop in the Hamptons and is a close friend of Ina Garten’s. It’s easy to see the similarities in their recipes. They are simple, fresh, and pack bold flavors. (The chicken salad with basil cream is one of my go-tos for summer entertaining.) This creamy roasted tomato dip has only a handful of ingredients, but it’s incredibly flavorful and totally addictive. The original recipe is near perfect, but I couldn’t resist including a big pinch of smoked paprika, which adds complex, smoldering undertones without being overtly spicy.
You can easily prepare this dip a day or two in advance. It’s delicious with veggies and crackers, but you could also serve it with cold poached shrimp, or use it as a sandwich spread–I think it would be especially yummy on a BLT.
- 6 small plum tomatoes or 3 medium tomatoes, cored and quartered
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 6 ounces cream cheese
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- Minced fresh chives, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 425°F. Toss the tomatoes and garlic with the olive oil and arrange on a baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper and roast until softened and just beginning to brown in spots, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool slightly.
- Transfer the tomatoes and garlic to a food processor. Add the cream cheese, sour cream, and smoked paprika and puree until smooth. Pour into a serving bowl and garnish with chives.