Sometimes, the highlight of a meal can be its appetizer — especially when it is a one-of-a-kind dish. After sampling a fair amount of local Mexican restaurants and dining in authentic Mexican fare eateries, I’m certain there is nothing quite like El Azteco’s cheese dip.

It’s a blend of sour cream, cottage cheese and shredded Muenster cheese with scallions and jalapeño peppers. I’ve been told that dashes of cumin, Worcestershire sauce and garlic powder complete the “secret” ingredients.

Fortunately, the basket of thick and sturdy blue and yellow corn chips that El Azteco serves with the $4.50 appetizer can handle the heavy and chucky dip.

I found that those sturdy chips also came in handy for any duels to retrieve the last morsels in the meant-to-share bowl.

El Azteco West 1016 W. Saginaw St. Lansing

(517) 485-4589 11 am – 5 pm Mon. 11 am – 10 pm Tues.-Thurs. 11 am – 11 pm Fri. & Sat. Noon - 9 pm Sun.

El Azteco East 225 Ann St. East Lansing

(517) 351-9111 11 am – 10 pm Sun.-Thurs. 11 am – 11 pm Fri. & Sat.