This recipe went viral for a reason! Our friend Caeli-Rose from @happierinthekitchen shares how to make a restaurant-quality Cloud 9® Whipped Feta Dip at home. It is the perfect appetizer for entertaining; combining whipped Feta cheese with sweet & savory slow-roasted Cloud 9® Bite-Sized Fruity Tomatoes. The end result? Pure magic for you and your guests.
If you already love Feta cheese and haven’t tried whipping it yet, your life is about to change! You may ask yourself why you haven’t tried this sooner… trust me on this! Cloud 9® Whipped Feta Dip specifically made with sweet Cloud 9® Bite-Sized Fruity Tomatoes, is going to be your new favorite appetizer to bring to a party, or to serve the family before dinner. It’s beginner-friendly, versatile, and bursting with flavor, which will leave you saying, “I made THIS?”
I first heard about whipped Feta when I went to a restaurant in downtown Chicago with some friends that were visiting. It was a highly recommended restaurant, and per my own habit, I try to order what the servers recommend. In fact, I ask the server to build their ideal meal out of the menu (they’re not only the people selling this food every day, but probably eating it at the end of every shift, too!). Our server didn’t even hesitate when he recommended three specific appetizers, one of which was the whipped Feta dish. I was intrigued, and skeptical as ever, so we ordered it. To everyone’s surprise, it was incredible! The presentation was beautiful (imagine: burst cherry tomatoes scattered about the plate) and the flavors were outstanding. I would be doing a disservice to not attempt this myself and pass this recipe on.
SLOW-ROASTED MAGIC –
After trying the dip, I immediately started thinking about how I could recreate this at home. I just knew that my favorite Cloud 9® Bite-Sized Fruity Tomatoes would be perfect for this recipe. They are SO sweet – making them the perfect juxtaposition to the flavors of the dip! Because they are greenhouse grown, their quality and flavor are always consistent and I can count on the fact that whenever I use them, I will get that same sweet taste every time!
The Cloud 9® Bite-Sized Fruity Tomatoes are certainly the highlight of this recipe. First and foremost, I should point out that my recipe says to use 1-3 pints of them. This is because I absolutely LOVE these tomatoes, so I chose to add 3 pints. If you don’t want to roast as many, you definitely don’t need to. I will assure you that tomatoes cook down greatly in the oven, so three pints really won’t end up being that much; probably measuring about two cups of tomatoes once they are all roasted.
These hand-picked, bite-sized tomatoes are naturally bursting with a sweet flavor. Slow roasting them only amplifies the magic happening within. The result? A more concentrated, intense, subtly smokey, and caramelized bite of magic, with more flavor and less liquid than its raw form. In addition to their flavor, the Cloud 9® Bite-Sized Fruity Tomatoes are perfectly bite-sized, meaning they don’t have to be chopped or cut in any way before roasting, and when served, each bite will have a little bit of tomato included. Before roasting, make sure to generously season the tomatoes with salt and pepper, as this is truly the only time to season the dip. With this recipe, you want the tomatoes to burst with their own complex flavors. When combined with the naturally salty flavors of the Feta, the roasted Cloud 9® Bite-Sized Fruity Tomatoes truly shine as the star of the show.
A MUST-TRY AT HOME –
What I found when I started making this recipe is that perfecting comes with trial and error. I made it multiple times before I got it just right. This dip is all about consistency. Getting the Feta blended into a smooth texture is probably the most challenging part. It helps to ensure that all of your ingredients are at room temperature prior to blending. The order in which you blend the ingredients doesn’t matter too much, but I like to save the olive oil and honey for the end in an effort to not make the dip too runny. If needed, these two ingredients can be added in moderation until desired consistency is achieved.
When I was researching, I found that some whipped Feta recipes called for cream cheese, and others for Greek yogurt. I made sure to try them both! Since they each bring something different to the finished product, I included both in my recipe. The cream cheese brings more smoothness to the dip and the Greek yogurt has that little extra tang that pairs so well with the sweetness of the tomatoes. If you have an allergy or preference for only one or the other, you can substitute as needed and still end up with a great finished product.
It’s sweet, salty, creamy, and totally unique. I was shocked to learn how incredibly easy this recipe is to make at home. You can easily whip it up in just over 30 minutes which includes the time of roasting the tomatoes. It’s perfect to make ahead for a party and will surely impress your guests. One of the best parts of this dip is that it’s not seasonal – it would be just as good at a pool party as it would during the holidays. And since Cloud 9® Bite-Sized Fruity Tomatoes are greenhouse grown, you can count on them anytime your tastebuds crave this dip!
TIME TO ENJOY –
When it’s time to serve this beautiful Cloud 9® Whipped Feta Dip, you should know a few things. The dip is even better when it’s been chilled for a while. I recommend letting it set for at least one hour after making it. Chilling the dip in the refrigerator allows the flavors to really combine. The garlic and honey will have a chance to marinate within, and the lemon juice helps bring everything together. The longer it can sit prior to serving, the more flavorful it will be!
As for serving, I prefer to use a larger bowl, so the mixed-in tomatoes can easily be seen. As a finishing touch, I like to drizzle balsamic glaze on top as an added burst of flavor. This step is optional but highly recommended. If you’re worried about how the crowd feels about balsamic vinegar, you can easily serve it on the side, along with additional roasted tomatoes, for people to add their own desired amount. This versatile dip can be served with almost anything, but my favorite is a sliced baguette that’s been lightly toasted. There’s something about the warm, thick sliced bread pieces that perfectly complement the cool creamy dip.
Well, there you have it! I hope you enjoy this Cloud 9® Whipped Feta Dip as much as I have! Once you make this for yourself, I guarantee that it will become one of your staple dishes!