Saturday, 17 December 2011

Lucky dips

For a lovely festive get together with friends today, I made some dips as my contribution. They were based on the following BBC Good Food recipes:

Butter bean, lemon & herb pate

Tangy roast pepper & walnut dip

Cream cheese & sweet chilli dip

Of course, I can't leave anything alone, so my tweaked recipes are:

Butterbean dip
2 400g cans butterbeans, drained
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
Handful of torn coriander
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 good tsp ground cumin
2-3 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Whizz everything in a food processor to the desired consistency. If you need more liquid, add water or runny yogurt. Next time I think I will add some toasted and well-ground cumin seeds.

Hard to say how many it serves as it depends on the situation, but this makes a takeaway container full.

Roast pepper dip

2 jars roast red peppers (not hot!)
150g walnuts
1 clove garlic, crushed
A good squeeze of tomato puree (2 tbsp?)
1 tbsp cider vinegar (or any decent vinegar)
5-6 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp 'normal' paprika
small pinch of hot smoked paprika
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oil gently with the spices and garlic. Meanwhile, whizz the other ingredients together in a food processor, and pour in the warm oil and spices. Adjust consistency and seasoning to taste.

This makes half to two-thirds of a takeaway container.

Cream cheese & sweet chilli
1 regular pack cream cheese
1 regular pot greek yogurt, e.g. Total
Handful of coriander, torn
Salt to taste
Sweet chilli sauce

Whizz the yogurt, cream cheese, coriander and salt together (I used a stick blender this time). Pour it into a serving dish, and layer the sweet chilli sauce on top (adjust amount to taste). Dip your dipping things through it to get some of each layer.

All the dips are vegetarian, and the first two are vegan.

Dipping things
To dip, I just put together lots of lovely fresh veg, and some home made pitta chips: split pittas, cut into rough triangles, brushed with oil, seasoned, and baked at 180°C for 8-10 mins until crisp.

It turned out to be easiest to cut the pittas with scissors - first crosswise into two pockets, then each pocket flatwise (if that's even a word) into separate sides, and then each side into triangles. My idea of microwaving them to puff them up and separate the two sides didn't work, they just got soggy and harder to cut.