To say I loved college would be an understatement. I credit a lot of who am to my alma mater. If you hadn’t already guessed, I attended Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas (a.k.a The Little Apple). For those of you that haven’t had the pleasure of touring this fantastic campus or getting your groove on in Aggieville, I highly recommend you add it to your bucket list. You won’t be disappointed.

I spent three years of my life at this school. My first year of college I actually attended the University of Kansas until I came to my senses. It was a dark moment in my life, please forgive. So, with time limited, I had to make my college experience an 11/10. I re-affiliated with my sorority, played intramurals, and hung out at Porters like it was my job. I was even president of a women’s leadership club and this sassy lady was my VP. I would tell you about our two-some pub crawl, but I try to keep things PG on this here ol’blog. Let’s just say it ended with a walk through at Burger King late at night for a two-fer.

Speaking of food, I dined at some great restaurants in Manhattan. Even though I wasn’t a self-proclaimed foodie back then nor did I have any money to purchase fancy food, I still appreciated good food when I ate it. My top three favorite restaurants were:
1) Harry’s – I still crave Harry’s to this day. I am wiping drool from my face just thinking about their prime rib and bruschetta right now.
2) So Long Saloon– Fantastic Bloody Mary’s and you can’t go wrong with their raspberry bean dip. Heaven I tell ya.
3) Coco Bolos – Wednesday night was sangria night. After chapter meeting, a gaggle of us G-Phi’s would stroll over and order a bazillion pitchers of this purple-y concoction. No wonder my Thursday class attendance suffered. Not only did they make wonderful sangria’s, but their pico de gallo and jalapeno dressing was the bomb.com. Yep, I totally just said that.

I didn’t know this at the sangria-induced time, but Mr. B was a cook at Bolo’s! He was the true chef in our household up until a few years ago, but now he’s my sous chef. Shhhh…don’t tell him I said that. Anyways, one the of the perks of dating a cook from one of your favorite restaurants in town is tasty food at home. Mr. B would whip up batches of the pico de gallo and jalapeno dressing all the time. I would sneak by his house and steal tubs of this stuff from the refrigerator. I was crack addicted.
So today, I thought it would be fun to give back to the alma mater and share with you those two recipes that bring back fond memories for me. Mr. B and I spent the better part of a Sunday trying to perfect these dips. At one point we had the recipes written down, but with seven moves and Google docs not around yet, we lost them. But with luck, Alzheimers hasn’t hit us yet and we were able to get darn close.
My inner college verdict, both of these dips don’t skip a beat.


Pico de Gallo and Jalapeno Ranch Dressing
Prep Time: 15 minutes + 30 minutes to chill
Cook Time: 10 minutes
for the pico de gallo:
1 large white onion (about 3 cups), diced
1/4 cup cilantro, diced
6 cups beef tomatoes, diced
2 jalapenos, deseeded and diced
2 limes, juiced
salt and pepper
for the jalapeno ranch dressing:
1/2 head cilantro
2 jalapenos, deseeded
1 cup mayo
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon ranch dressing packet mix
for the pico de gallo:
Mix all ingredients into a bowl. Serve with tortilla chips. Keeps up to a week.
for the jalapeno ranch dressing:
Put cilantro and jalapenos into a food processor. Pulse to combine. In a medium bowl, mix together mayo, buttermilk, ranch packet, and jalapeno/cilantro mixture. Best to chill for 30 minutes before serving.