Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Philly Cheesesteak Dip ala OC Brewing Company

Buh-bye summer! It's been fun! But doesn't it seem that autumn is making some serious headway into town even before we're ready for it? Before I'm ready for it anyway.  

Who would imagine that on our beach vacation where we normally feast on crab and Maryland corn (and believe me, we did plenty of crab feasting!), that we'd discover what could become the best tailgate recipe I've come across in many a moon: Philly Cheesesteak Dip from OC Brewing Company in Ocean City, MD. One taste and I knew immediately this one would be a Dinner Plan-it duplication to share with all of you!

The dip at OC Brewing brought all the classic flavors of a cheesesteak into one hot, bubbling casserole dish to dip with their house-made big, crusty pretzels. Now you know I can't do pretzels, so they fried up a batch of their house-made crunchy and sturdy potato chips for dipping instead. Browned pieces of thinly sliced steak, sweet onion and green peppers were surrounded by a 5 cheese sauce so lush and spot on, it was just like dipping into a real Philly Cheesesteak! 

The dip as served at OC Brewing...minus the big soft pretzel, with their homemade chips.

What did I change? Not much. I added mushrooms and garnished it with hot pepper rings, because that's how I take my cheesesteak hoagie. If you don't care for mushrooms, leave them out like they do at OC Brewing. I don't know what cheeses they used, only that there were five of I used my favorite. Cream cheese for the creamy base, shredded ColbyJack (because I had it on hand - and because it melts nicely), American and gouda cheeses went in (also for the meltability (new word?) factor and provolone for stretchy, gooey, classic steak sub character.  

Thanks OC Brewing for not just another afternoon/evening of great beers and cocktails and awesome bartenders, but for the inspiration for what will become this year's fave tailgating classic. So what if it was enjoyed first in Raven's country and created in honor of an Eagle's country classic will be consumed with delight within Steeler Nation!

Philly Cheesesteak Dip
ala OC Brewing Company

  • 1 T olive oil
  • 3/4 lb thinly sliced top round, cut into slivers about 1 1/2" long
  • Jane's Crazy Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste (don't go too "Crazy" with the Crazy Salt, there's lots of salt in all this gooey cheese)
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced (approx. 1/2 C)
  • 1/2 medium green pepper, diced (approx. 1/2 C)
  • 3/4 C. mushrooms, diced
  • 8 oz. block Lite cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 C. shredded ColbyJack cheese, or mild cheddar
  • 4 slices American cheese, crumbled
  • 3/4 - 1 C gouda, shredded
  • 3 slices provolone cheese, crumble 2 and reserve 2 whole slices to lay across the top of the finished casserole
  • pickled hot banana pepper rings for garnish
  • pita chips, soft pretzels or toasted baguette slices

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Toss the steak pieces with Crazy Salt and pepper.

Heat the oil in a very hot skillet, add the steak pieces and saute until they are nicely browned and caramelized on all sides. Add the veggies to the pan and cook until soft. Remove from heat.

While the steak is cooking, put the lite cream cheese (remember when it used to be called Neufchatel?) into a large bowl. Add the hot steak and veggies to the bowl along with all the delicious juices. Stir the cream cheese, steak and veggies together until well combined. Add the rest of the cheeses (except for the reserved 2 whole slices of provolone) and combine completely.

Spoon mixture into a small cast iron skillet or heat proof casserole dish. Place the reserved provolone over the top and bake for 25 minutes or until bubbly and browned. Remove from oven and garnish with pickled hot banana pepper rings.

Serve with pita or pretzels or baguette slices or sturdy potato chips!

Now, GO STEELERS!!!!!!

P. S.  We didn't vacation in Ocean City, MD this year, but in Rehobeth Beach...and went down to OC just for OC Brewing Company!

Rehoboth Beach, DE by moonlight.

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