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Authors: Rick Rodgers

Dip It! (14 page)

BOOK: Dip It!
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2.
Whisk well to recombine. Pour into a small serving bowl and serve chilled or at room temperature.

Sweet and Spicy Red Pepper Dip

makes 2 cups

MAKE-AHEAD
: The dip can be prepared up to 2 days ahead.

T
here are few dips more vibrantly colorful than this one. It’s also another dip that is low in fat but high in flavor—serve it with crudités for a snack that will get high marks from your calorie-watching guests.

what to dip
Pita bread wedges •
Baguette slices •
Tortilla chips, store-bought
or homemade
(page 176) • Broccoli
and cauliflower florets,
prepared for dipping
(see page 85) •
Zucchini slices
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
4 garlic cloves, minced
6 large red bell peppers, roasted (see page 12), peeled, and seeded
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt to taste

1.
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and jalapeño and cook uncovered, stirring often,
until the onion is browned, about 6 minutes. During the last minute, add the garlic. Let cool slightly.

2.
Combine the red peppers, onion and garlic, red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, and cumin in a food processor and process to a puree. Season with salt. Transfer to a medium bowl and let cool completely, then cover tightly and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour, or up to 2 days.

3.
Transfer to a serving bowl and serve chilled.

Roasted Garlic Skordalia

makes about 4 cups

MAKE-AHEAD
: The skordalia can be prepared up to 2 days ahead.

T
o call skordalia garlicky would be an understatement (the name derives from
skorda,
Greek for garlic). The classic recipe uses potatoes mashed with raw garlic (some versions use ground nuts or bread crumbs), and most Greeks make it so strong that it is spicy-hot. I like to use roasted garlic to tame the heat. One important tip: never use a food processor to puree potatoes, or you will end up with something that resembles a pot of glue. A potato ricer does the best job.

what to dip
Potato chips, store-bought
or homemade
(page 171 or 174) •
Pita bread wedges •
Pita Toasts (page 179) •
Flatbread crisps •
Carrot sticks • Celery
sticks • Cherry
tomatoes • Cucumber
slices • Radishes •
Zucchini slices
2 large baking (russet) potatoes (1 ¼ pounds), scrubbed
2 large heads garlic, roasted (see page 10)
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1.
Place the potatoes in a large saucepan, cover with lightly salted water, and bring to a boil over high heat. Cook
until the potatoes are tender, about 35 minutes. Drain, reserving about 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Rinse the potatoes under cold water, and let cool until easy to handle.

2.
Peel the potatoes. Press them through a potato ricer or rub through a wire sieve into a large bowl. Squeeze the cooled garlic from the skins into the bowl. Using a handheld electric mixer or a whisk, beat in the lemon juice. Gradually beat in the oil, then beat in enough of the reserved potato liquid to make a smooth dip. Season with salt and pepper. Cover tightly and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours, or up to 2 days.

3.
Transfer the skordalia to a serving bowl, and serve at room temperature.

CLASSIC SKORDALIA
Substitute 4 garlic cloves, crushed through a press, for the roast garlic.

Sun-Dried Tomato Olivada

makes about 2½ cups

MAKE-AHEAD
: The olivada can be prepared up to 2 days ahead.

S
un-dried tomatoes are one of those ingredients that make a cook wonder what one did without them in the old days (say, twenty years ago). They add a wallop of flavor to whatever they’re in, and this spread is no exception. Adjust its thickness with a bit of extra oil or even water. Take care when seasoning, as some sun-dried tomatoes are quite salty.

what to spread
Baguette slices •
Crostini (page 180) •
Breadsticks, store-bought
or homemade
(page 184) • Flatbread
crisps • Cherry
tomatoes • Tiny
new potatoes, cooked
(see page 87) • Red
bell pepper strips •
Zucchini rounds
½ cup pitted and chopped black Mediterranean olives, such as Kalamata
½ cup drained and coarsely chopped oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
1 large red bell pepper, roasted (see page 12), peeled, seeded, and cut into ¼-inch dice
2 tablespoons nonpareil capers, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano (or additional basil)
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed through a press
¼ teaspoon crushed hot red pepper
Salt to taste

1.
Combine the olives, sun-dried tomatoes, roasted pepper, capers, basil, oregano, vinegar, oil, garlic, and hot pepper in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped but not pureed. Season with salt. Transfer to a medium bowl, cover, and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour, or up to 3 days.

2.
Transfer to a serving bowl. Serve chilled or at room temperature, with a small knife for spreading.

Tahini-Carrot Dip

makes 2 cups

MAKE-AHEAD
: The dip can be prepared up to 2 days ahead.

V
egetable juice makes an interesting cooking ingredient. Bottled carrot juice, available at natural food stores, is perfect in this tahini dip, but do experiment with other freshly extracted juices from your local juice stand.

what to dip
Pita bread wedges •
Broccoli and
cauliflower florets,
prepared for dipping
(see page 85) • Carrot
sticks • Celery sticks •
Cherry tomatoes •
Cucumber slices •
Zucchini slices
1 cup tahini
¾ cup carrot juice, or as needed
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
1½ teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
2 garlic cloves, crushed through a press
Salt and hot red pepper sauce, to taste
Chopped fresh parsley for garnish

1. Combine the tahini, carrot juice, lemon juice, rosemary, and garlic in a blender. Blend until smooth, occasionally stopping the blender to scrape down the sides. Season with the salt and hot pepper sauce. Transfer to a serving bowl. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour, or
up to 2 days. If the chilled dip is too thick, thin with additional carrot juice.

2. Sprinkle with parsley and serve chilled or at room temperature.

Tomato Romesco

makes about 1¼ cups

MAKE-AHEAD
: The dip can be prepared up to 2 days ahead.

T
he Spanish use this deep pink sauce for shellfish, but there’s no reason it shouldn’t be used as a dip. If you wish, puree a roasted red pepper (see page 12) with the rest of the ingredients and use a bit more olive oil to thin the dip.

what to dip
Potato chips, store-bought
or homemade
(pages 171 or 174) •
Baguette slices • Pita
bread wedges • Pita
Toasts (page 179) •
Flatbread crisps •
Carrot sticks • Celery
sticks • Cherry
tomatoes • Cucumber
slices • Zucchini slices
cup sliced natural almonds
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 ripe plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped (or use canned tomatoes)
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
teaspoon ground hot red (cayenne) pepper
Salt to taste

1. Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the almonds and heat, stirring often, until toasted, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate and let cool.

2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until golden, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer to a blender or a food processor.

BOOK: Dip It!
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