Cheddar Cheese-Bacon Dip
- 3 tablespoons chopped pecans
- 7 bacon slices, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 (8-oz.) packages cream cheese, softened
- 1/3 cup half-and-half
- 4 ounces shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 1/8 to 1/4 tsp. ground red pepper (optional)
- Apple slices, assorted crackers
- 1. Preheat oven to 350°. Bake pecans in single layer in a shallow pan 6 to 8 minutes or until toasted and fragrant, stirring after 3 minutes.
- 2. Cook bacon in a skillet over medium-high heat, stirring often, 10 minutes or until crisp. Remove bacon, and drain on paper towels, reserving 1 Tbsp. drippings in skillet. Add minced garlic to hot drippings, and sauté 1 minute.
- 3. Beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add half-and-half, beating until combined. Stir in bacon, garlic, Cheddar cheese, and parsley. Spoon mixture into 4 (1-cup) baking dishes or 1 (1-qt.) baking dish.
- 4. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until golden and bubbly. Sprinkle with pecans; serve with apple slices and assorted crackers.
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