If you live in the south or have ever done any SEC tailgating, you’re probably familiar with Mississippi Sin or, as it’s called by some, Mississippi State Sin. It’s a devilishly delicious dip dotted with specs of ham and chopped green chiles that apparently originated in the kitchen of some big MS Bulldog fan. Up until a few months ago, I had only heard of this Southern college game-day tradition. Then, while flipping through a community cookbook my mom recently gave me (The 2nd Annual South Area Diversity Cookbook of the USPS), I came across the recipe and decided to make a batch for comparison purposes and then create my own version. You know, one that would proudly represent South Louisiana and be embraced by fans at pre-game festivities all across the region–including those at places like, let’s say, Tiger Stadium.
To maintain the integrity of the dip, I felt like the most obvious place to make my mark was with the protein. So I replaced the standard ham with tasso. I also upped the amount of green onions (because South Louisianians love green onions) and added garlic and fresh jalapeños. I kept everything else the same (barring subtle differences from fan to fan). I must say, the smoky, spiced-just-right tasso is what defines this version. The extra green onions along with the garlic and jalapeños, are also welcome additions that help cut through some of the richness brought on by the cheeses and sour cream. And eating the dip-soaked crusty bread bowl that’s left behind after all the dip is gone? The best part of any “sin.”
Now listen. Don’t wait until football season to try this dip. Make it today or for Father’s Day. You’ll love it. It’s grill-friendly too. All you need to do is wrap the stuffed bread bowl in heavy duty aluminum foil and set it over indirect heat until the dip is hot. And remember, if you can’t find tasso in your area click on the “Resources” tab above, find my tasso contacts and order away.
To wash away … I mean, to wash down this sin, turn to my latest fav IPA–Ballast Point Sculpin. Don’t be misled by the title which is derived from that unattractive, stinging fish by the same name. This beer is quite attractive with its full-on flavor of apricots, peaches, mangos, grapefruit, lemon and pine. And about the only discomfort you’ll experience from enjoying it is a hangover. That is, only if you have one too many. Best of luck with that!
Until next time …
Crescent City Sin Recipe
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups sour cream
1 4-ounce can chopped green chilies, drained
2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup diced tasso
1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
1 large loaf round crusty bread
Crostini, chips or crackers, for serving
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine the cream cheese and sour cream. Stir in green chilies and next 5 ingredients. Cut a thin slice from top of bread and hollow out inside. Pour dip into hollowed bread, cover with reserved top slice and wrap in aluminum foil. Bake until heated through, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Serve with crostini, chips or crackers. Makes about 4 cups.