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Crudité with Sun Dried Tomato Dip

Placement of the vegetables is all about what looks pleasing to your eye.

Vegetables:   Baby Carrots, Baby Yellow Squash and Zucchini, Asparagus, Brussels sprouts, Baby Bell Peppers, Radicchio 

1. Cut the radicchio in half and hollow out each side. This is where you will place your dips. Place the halved on the board in separate areas.
2. You will need to blanch off your carrots, Brussels sprouts and asparagus. When blanching off your vegetables, place in boiling water for no more than 2 to 3 minutes. You want to make sure you do not overcook. The idea is to soften them a bit, but making sure they are still crispy.
3. Place the vegetable around the radicchio bowls, mixing up the colors and shapes. 
4. Garnish with the green onion and tomato flowers.

Be creative, there is no right way to do this. When it looks good to your eye, it will look good to your guests!

Tomato Flower:  Beginning at the top of a tomato, peel the tomato skin with a sharp utility knife. The garnish works best if the peel is ¾" to 1" wide, is a continuous peel, and the peel is thin with very little flesh attached.   Lie peel flat with flesh side up. Roll up the peel.   Set peel on plate and allow it to open. If needed, shape the peel to resemble an "opening rose”.

White lily flowers:   Cut root end and part of the green part off of the green onion and discard. You are now left with the white bulb and the thick white stem. Starting about 1-inch away from the stem, make several cuts lengthwise, towards the bulb area. Turn, and repeat. Place it in the ice water, until ready to use, the thin cuts will flair out and curl up making it look like a flower

Sun Dried Tomato Dip
1/4 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped 
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature 
1/2 cup sour cream 
1/4 cup mayonnaise 
2 cloves garlic, minced hot pepper sauce to taste 
3/4 teaspoon salt 
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
1/4 cup fresh basil

Directions:  In a food processor, mix the sun-dried tomatoes, cream cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, garlic, hot pepper sauce, salt, and pepper. Process until well-blended. Add basil, and continue processing until smooth. Chill at least 1 hour in the refrigerator before serving

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