Tostada Dip – A Super Bowl Party Favorite

by | Jan 30, 2012 | Appetizers, Entertaining, Recipes

Tostada Dip, a Super Bowl party favorite

Watching the 49ers play the Giants a couple of weekends ago reminded me of the playoff game and Super Bowl parties I attended in the 1980’s when the 49ers won the Super Bowl four times. I often brought tostada dip to the parties and the dip was just about as popular at those parties as Joe Montana was to Niners Fans. Long time Livermore resident, Eleanor Barbera, gave me the tostada dip recipe.

Eleanor Barbera was one of those people that I would like to see as she always had a big smile for me. When my sisters and I attended Fifth Street Elementary School (which was where the Del Valle Continuation High School is now), Eleanor was the yard duty lady. Later she worked as a teacher’s aid at Almond Avenue School and after that at Jackson Avenue School. When we were older and played softball in the LARPD women’s softball leagues with her daughter Susie, she would watch our games and practices. She was quite a baseball fan and after she passed away I learned she played on a semi-pro women’s team in Merced—like the team from the movie, “A League of Our Own.” I wish I could have heard some of her stories about her ball playing days. Eleanor was of Irish and Native American ancestry and had high cheekbones, dark hair and olive complexion. She was married to Siberio “Sib” Barbera of Italian ancestry and also an avid sports fan. Eleanor and Sib lived on Third Street in one of the charming craftsman style homes that share the backside of the block that Loard’s Ice Cream Parlor is on. For several years, Sib owned and operated the Atlantic Richfield Service Station on the corner of South L and Second Street in Livermore. He retired and sold it in the early 1980s.

Sib and Eleanor Barbera

Eleanor and Sib had three children, Katherine (Kathy), Thomas Joseph (Joe), and Susanne (Susie). Kathy, also known as Kitt Gilmour, worked as a 911 dispatcher at the Lab for several years. During the last years of his life, Joe lived in the caretaker cottage on our family’s ranch and owned and operated a precision machining shop in Livermore. Susie Barbera was in our sister Nancy’s class at Fifth Street and together they would torment the boys on the playground. Susie is now Susanne Ramsey and is a computer security officer at the Lab and the daughter-in-law of well-known Livermore artist Carolyn Ramsey.

Unfortunately, the Niners won’t be playing at the Super Bowl this year, but I am providing you with Eleanor’s tostada dip recipe so you can eat it while watching the two teams that do make it to the Super Bowl. Following the dip recipe are some tips to make the recipe a 2012-style dip.

Tostada Dip

– Serves 12

  • 1 16-ounce can refried beans
  • 1 7-ounce can chopped Ortega chilies
  • 3 tablespoons mild taco sauce
  • 2 cups guacamole dip
  • 1 small bell pepper, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 medium ripe tomato, finely diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 pint sour cream
  • 1 small head of lettuce, finely shredded (optional)
  • ½ pound sharp cheddar cheese, grated

½ pound Monterey Jack cheese, grated

On a plate or shallow bowl, spread the refried beans. In this order, add additional layers of chilies, taco sauce, and avocado dip. In a small bowl, combine the bell pepper, tomato and celery. Spread on top of the dip. Add a layer of sour cream on top of the chopped vegetables. Top with the lettuce, and then the cheeses.

2012-style dip tips: Garnish the top of the dip with sliced olives, chopped cilantro, and tomatoes. Use preshredded Mexican taco style cheese instead of just the Monterey Jack and cheddar cheeses. Substitute the bell pepper with a chopped jalapeno pepper (be sure to remove the seeds). Serve with scoop style corn or tortilla chips, or tortilla chips made in your favorite team’s colors.

Go San Francisco Giants! It’s not too early to start cheering on our favorite baseball team, is it?!?

~merry carter~