Nothing gets you through the holiday entertaining season — from Thanksgiving guest arrival to college bowl game-watching — like a decadent dip or spread that you can prepare in advance and pull out for a crowd. From Sweet Potato Salsa and Salmon Mousse to Butternut Squash Dip with Curried Crostini, these impressive options from local chefs and caterers are as elegant as they are rich and flavorful.
Tastefully Yours Catering
Andrew Huszar, executive chef and owner
Best served hot in a toasty bread bowl (sure to disappear along with its contents), this deliciously dense dip from seasoned caterer Andrew Huszar doesn’t skimp on the good stuff — heavy cream, whole milk and lots of smoky Gouda. The sweet and nutty flavors of caramelized onions, leeks and fennel create a savory, buttery spread perfect for crispy lavosh or hearty crackers.
The Gardens Restaurant
Jorge Zavala, executive chef
Popular on teatime menus, Salmon Mousse is a stellar, yet simple, dip for holiday entertaining, as preparation encompasses but a few whirls in the food processor. This version from The Gardens Restaurant inside the Fort Worth Botanic Garden is served in a cucumber cup during showers and receptions. Try smoked salmon for a rich and salty variation.
Linguine & Dirty Martinis
Callie Salls, chef and owner
Personal chef and caterer Callie Salls delivers a bounty of fall’s beauty in one pretty little stuffed winter squash. Fresh sage, a smidge of honey and orange zest, combined with pomegranate seed garnishes for bursts of sweetness, make this a multifaceted dish of textures and seasonal flavors. The winter squash as a serving shell is optional but highly recommended for prime presentation.
Jeff Harris, executive chef
Making ricotta from scratch is easier than it sounds, yet far creamier and more indulgent than any store-bought variety. AF+B executive chef Jeff Harris tops his with roasted ginger and carrot purée, fresh thyme and toasted hazelnuts for a fall-themed spread. Crackers or chips are suitable accompaniments, but take a tip from Harris and serve it with grilled sourdough bread from Black Rooster Bakery.
Cast Iron Restaurant at Omni Fort Worth Hotel
Sebastien Layen, executive chef
Salsa goes from “so-so” to “so scrumptious” with the addition of a fall favorite — roasted sweet potatoes. Cast Iron chef Sebastien Layen dices the popular root vegetable along with avocado and red onion to create a sweet and tangy dish that will keep guests coming back for another scoop. Serve with blue corn tortilla chips for a colorful presentation.