My folks have the kind of house where people walk in the door and feel like they’ve come home. It always smells like my mother's latest culinary creation and it pleases me to no end when someone who doesn’t live there feels comfortable enough to kick off their shoes and dig in at the dinner table.
This outwardly barren time of year makes me think of gatherings that brought a full-bodied glow to our home.
Like all good gatherings, it started out small and became a necessity because it was such a success.
It was junior year of high school, and my friends and I were slogging through AP U.S. history. The class was a behemoth of information that made it feel as though we had to relearn the entire history of our young country. After nine months of that oddly rewarding torture and joy, I can safely say that our country didn’t feel so young. But nevertheless, the study session snack marathon was born.
Editor's Note: Rick Morris is a web developer and volunteer firefighter from Canton, North Carolina. He is one of seven CNN viewers selected to be a part of the Fit Nation Triathlon Challenge program. Each athlete receives all the tools necessary to train for and compete in the Nautica Malibu Triathlon this September, alongside Dr. Sanjay Gupta. The seven athletes met up two weeks ago in Atlanta for the official kickoff of the program, where Rick developed a new taste for hummus.
Hummus. The very word, for those like me, not in the know, sounded like a foreign term for something gross. Globular pustules on a teenager's face. A backwoods verb for singing under one's breath (“hummus a song, Cooter”). Perhaps a brand of automobile.
Until recently, I can honestly say that I had never heard of hummus. In fact, I was somewhat taken aback when it was placed in front of me at a recent restaurant gathering. It evolved something like this...
"After double-dipping just a few times, researchers found 50 to 100 times more bacteria in the dip - and that was just from one mouth," says Sanjay Gupta.
We're gonna be waaaaaayyyyy over here with our own no-sharesies bowl of guacamole, thank you very much.
Tune in to SANJAY GUPTA | MD every Saturday and Sunday at 7:30am ET on CNN.
If there's dip on the table, you know you're at a party. If there are at least three varieties present, that party is probably for the Super Bowl - and lucky you.
People don't go making dips all willy-nilly for a weeknight meal or a prim Sunday brunch. They're reserved for gloppy, sloppy abandon in the company of other revelers and these dips should not hold back. We repeat - they should not hold back.
Food editors like us are bombarded with recipe suggestions from celebrity chefs and product representatives touting non-fat, mayo-free, cheese-free, joy-free options for game day. We maintain that if you're eating sensibly the other 365 days of 2012 (okay - 362, because what fun is life if you can't go a little nuts on Thanksgiving, your birthday or New Year's Eve?), a little sour cream on a Frito isn't going to spell your demise. (Though apparently insufficient safety procedures might.)
So go ahead and get dippy with it, and scoop up a few of our favorite recipes from dip devotees Richard Blais, Eva Longoria, John Currence, Marcela Valladolid and our very own recipe boxes.