Photos by Aimee Broussard.

In the kitchen: Hot Muffuletta Dip

I don’t know about you, but regardless of the 90-degree heat preceding this hurricane season, I like to consider August something more like “pre-fall”—a time to start breaking out warm tones in my wardrobe as well as in my flavor palates. Aimee Broussard might have thought the same when heating up her usual Muffuletta Dip for The Tailgate Cookbook by her friend Beth Peterson, a Chicagoan who certainly knows the worth of a hot dish in “actual fall” (as for “actual winter,” well, the Midwest can keep its 20-degree average to itself, thanks very much). With a little bit of cream cheese and Parmesan to balance the umami of salami and olives, this dip is just as good as an after-school snack as a tailgating tradition. I guess we’ll save that for “actual football season.”


1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 cup Italian olive salad, drained
1 cup diced salami
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus an additional ¼ cup for topping
¼ cup chopped pepperoncini salad peppers
4 oz. provolone cheese, diced
1 celery rib, finely chopped
½ red bell pepper, chopped
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
French bread crostini
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except parsley and crostini. Spread mixture in an oven-safe dish, top with remaining ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until cheese is hot and bubbly. Garnish with fresh parsley, and serve with French bread crostini.
Makes 8-10 servings.