Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Mediterranean Bean Dip

Before I started Minxeats in 1995, I had a knitting blog. Yes, that would be a blog all about knitting, and no, that's not just a thing for old people to do. While knitting is fine as a solitary pursuit, it's often more fun to knit in a group situation. I started a Stitch 'n' Bitch this year so I could commune with my fellow knitters and also to instruct non-knitting friends in the craft.

We meet once a month to knit and chat. So far, the meetings have been at Casa Minx, and I've provided the snacks. I figure thick dips, when eaten with veggies and dry dippers like pita chips, are the easiest and cleanest snacks for people who are using their hands for other things (that would be knitting.) Unless they dip their fingers, or drop a loaded chip onto their laps, yarn and needles should stay clean.

That is the hope. It has worked so far, but the year is still young!

Last month I made some tzatziki with feta in it, and a lovely orange bean dip flavored with preserved lemon and roasted red pepper. Both were a big hit.

Mediterranean Bean Dip

1 15-oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 jarred roasted red bell pepper
1 tablespoon diced preserved lemon or 2 teaspoons fresh lemon zest
Extra virgin olive oil
Pinch cayenne
Salt and pepper to taste
Honey or agave syrup
Small handful of basil leaves, cut into a chiffonade

Place beans into a food processor with the bell pepper and lemon. Pulse to create a smooth puree, adding as much olive oil as needed to complete the job (a couple tablespoons at least). Season with cayenne and salt and pepper to taste. If the dip seems like it needs a little something, dribble in a tiny bit of honey or agave syrup to balance the lemon. Before serving, stir in the basil.

Serve with pita chips, sugar snap peas, carrots, raw bell pepper slices, whatever floats your boat.

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