Roasted Red Bell Pepper Dip

Makes 21/2 cups. Recipe is from “River Roads Recipes IV: Warm Welcomes, Entertaining Menus From Our Homes to Yours” by the Junior League of Baton Rouge.

1 tsp. olive oil

1 small red onion, cut into quarters

1 (7-oz.) jar roasted red bell peppers, drained

12 fresh basil leaves, crushed, or ½ tsp. dried basil

12 ozs. cream cheese, softened

Bagel chips

Chilled, blanched fresh asparagus spears

Cherry tomatoes

Red, green, orange and/or yellow bell pepper strips

Fresh mushrooms

1. Drizzle the olive oil over the onion in a small baking dish. Bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes or until tender. Let stand until cool.

2. Process the onion, roasted peppers and basil in a food processor until pureed. Add the cream cheese and pulse until combined. Chill, covered, for 3 hours or longer.

3. To serve, mound the cream cheese mixture in the center of a serving platter. Surround with bagel chips, asparagus spears, cherry tomatoes, bell pepper strips and mushrooms.

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