Quick Dips

Vegetarian Today - - Ingredient Focus -

THESE DIPS STAY TRUE to Ital­ian tra­di­tion us­ing clas­sic fla­vors and min­i­mal in­gre­di­ents. Plus, all of them can be made ahead and re­frig­er­ated. But for the best fla­vor, bring the dips to room tem­per­a­ture, about 30 min­utes, be­fore you plan to serve them.

Arugula Dip

Makes 1 cup To­tal time: 15 min­utes 21/2 cups Ital­ian bread cubes, crusts re­moved 2 Tbsp. white wine vine­gar 2 cups packed fresh arugula 2 Tbsp. ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil 2 Tbsp. ca­pers 1 tsp. Di­jon mus­tard 1 clove gar­lic, crushed Salt and black pep­per to taste Soak bread cubes in vine­gar un­til ab­sorbed. Purée arugula, oil, ca­pers, Di­jon, gar­lic, and soaked bread in a food pro­ces­sor; sea­son with salt and pep­per.

White Bean Dip

Makes 13/4 cups To­tal time: 10 min­utes 1 can can­nellini beans (15 oz.), drained and rinsed 1 Tbsp. roasted gar­lic cloves, see right 1 Tbsp. white bal­samic vine­gar 1 Tbsp. ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh thyme Salt and black pep­per to taste Purée beans, roasted gar­lic, bal­samic, and oil in a food pro­ces­sor. Trans­fer dip to a bowl. Stir in thyme and sea­son dip with salt and pep­per.

Sun-Dried Tomato Dip

Makes 1 cup To­tal time: 10 min­utes 1 cup goat cheese, soft­ened 1/2 cup chopped sun-dried to­ma­toes packed in oil 3 Tbsp. chopped fresh oregano 2 Tbsp. roasted gar­lic cloves, see be­low Salt and cayenne pep­per to taste

Purée goat cheese, sun-dried to­ma­toes, oregano, and roasted gar­lic in a food pro­ces­sor; sea­son with salt and cayenne.

Roasted Gar­lic

To roast gar­lic, pre­heat oven to 375°. Cut tops off whole bulbs of gar­lic to ex­pose cloves. Peel a layer or two of pa­per off to ex­pose more cloves.

Place the bulbs, cut sides up, in an oven­proof dish or pan. Driz­zle 1 Tbsp. olive oil over each bulb, cover dish with foil, and roast un­til gar­lic is soft when pierced with a knife, 45 min­utes. Squeeze bulbs from root end to pop out cloves.

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