Dips and Spreads

All posts in the Dips and Spreads category

Almond Butter

Published September 5, 2013 by jenmatteson

**I have to preface this post with the fact that it was obviously written a few weeks ago, as I mention that I’m leaving for my weeding in less than a week, and guess what, I already told you yesterday that I just got back from my wedding!

Who doesn’t like peanut butter? ¬†I’m not sure I know anyone personally, but I’m sure there is someone out there ūüėź ¬†While I really love peanut butter with almost anything, almond butter is just as good. ¬†I’ve been saving this recipe for quite some time, for no particular reason, except that I didn’t know when I’d have time to make it.

Almond Butter

Seeing as though I am not working (oh yeah, big announcement!), I have found that I have had quite a bit of time on my hands. Funny how easily you can keep yourself busy when you’re not working. ¬†You start to wonder how you had time to get anything done before! ¬†Great news for me, we are leaving for our wedding in less than a week, and getting things ready has certainly kept me busy over the last few weeks. ¬†Finalizing menus, choosing wines, coordinating arrivals, list after list, and I suppose I should start thinking about packing sometime soon.

Almond Butter

Anyway, back to the almond butter. ¬†I was a little skeptical as to if this would turn out well, but I had the perfect opportunity! ¬†My girlfriend, Kim (also famous on my blog for her sun-dried tomato guacamole), made a freaking¬†delicious Pad Thai a few weekends ago at my bachelorette party weekend, and I’ve been dying to recreate it. ¬†Not only was the Pad Thai out of this world, but it was vegan and gluten-free. ¬†Could life get any better?

Almond Butter

Kim’s sauce was made with almond butter, and so instead of buying some, I figured this was my calling to finally make this almond butter recipe I’d been saving for probably over a year. ¬†Funny thing is, it couldn’t have been any easier, and I thought it tasted delicious! ¬†Make up a batch and enjoy it on toast, sandwiches, cookies, by the spoonful or even in a Pad Thai recipe (I’ll post the vegan recipe soon, promise). ¬†You’ll love it!

Almond Butter

Almond Butter

Source: Adapted from Honey, What’s Cooking?
Servings: Makes 1 cup

Ingredients:

2 cups raw, unsalted almonds
2 tbsp Sugar in the Raw Turbinado Brown Sugar
1 tbsp olive oil
pinch of salt

Directions:

1. Add almonds into the bowl of a food processor.  Process for a few minutes, stopping every so often to scrape down the sides.  The mixture will first look like a course flour, but when processed for longer, will eventually form a dough, and finally a creamy butter.  This could take anywhere between 7-10 minutes of processing.  Just keep an eye on it and continue to stop and scrape down the sides.

2. Once the mixture resembles a creamy butter, add sugar, oil and a pinch of salt to taste.  Pulse a few times to combine.  Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.  Transfer to airtight container and store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Kimmy JJ’s Sun-Dried Tomato Guacamole

Published June 5, 2013 by jenmatteson

Serendipity. ¬†Did anyone ever really know what that meant until Kate Beckinsale¬†and John Cusack starred¬†in the movie? ¬†Well, I didn’t, but I was also in high school. ¬†So maybe I should have known what it meant…? ¬†This guacamole recipe comes to you courtesy of my good friend, Kimmy JJ. ¬†Just before I tried her guacamole, she informed me that she made it with sun-dried¬†tomatoes.¬† I love sun-dried¬†tomatoes, but in guacamole?? ¬†No, thank you. ¬†Or so I thought. ¬†As I scarfed down this lovely concoction, she told me the story of how this recipe came to be. ¬†It was short and sweet. ¬†She was making guacamole and went to add tomatoes, and realized she didn’t have any. ¬†But she did have sun-dried tomatoes, so she thought, what the heck, and threw them in there. ¬†At least, that’s how I remember the story.

Sun-Dried Tomato Guacamole

I know it sounds unusual, but it is so good! ¬†The sweetness from the sun-dried¬†tomatoes paired with the spiciness from the jalapenos is out of this world. ¬†Using the sun-dried¬†tomatoes that are oil packed really allows the sweetness of the tomatoes to seep into the rest of the dip making it taste even more rich and creamy.¬† I’m not sure about the rest of the ingredients Kim uses¬†– I just made guac how I usually do, but with the exception of the tomatoes. ¬†Take a risk and try this out next time you’re making guacamole!

Sun-Dried Tomato Guacamole

Sun-Dried Tomato Guacamole

Source: Kimmy JJ
Servings: Makes about 1 1/2 cups

Ingredients:

3 avocados, halved, pitted and chopped
1/2 onion (I used white, but red is suggested)
3 tbsp cilantro, chopped
2 jalapenos, seeded and minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp cumin
1/2 lime, juiced
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes
Kosher salt

Directions:

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine avocado, onion, cilantro, jalapenos, garlic and cumin.  Add lime juice and mash with the back of a fork to desired consistency.  Add sun-dried tomatoes and salt to taste.

Buffalo Wing Hummus

Published April 30, 2013 by jenmatteson

I know you read the title of this recipe, and thought that sounds kinda gross, right?¬† Well, I certainly did the first time I saw it, but I still saved it because I tend to love anything that includes buffalo sauce, especially Franks Red Hot.¬† Plus, I love hummus, it’s so versatile, easy to make, and pretty healthy.¬† I’ve been stuck making the same flavors of hummus for a while now, roasted garlic and roasted red pepper.¬† Of course both are fantastic, but some times you just need to spice it up a bit.¬† Literally.

Buffalo Wing Hummus

I saw this recipe right around the time NFL football was starting last year, but never got around to making it for a football event.  But I definitely should have.  This hummus satisfies the guilty pleasure of eating wings, minus all the added calories (and tendons and bones!).  I loved it and will be sure to break it out during the upcoming football season.  It might even make an appearance during the baseball season again!

Buffalo Wing Hummus

Buffalo Wing Hummus

Source: Adapted from¬†Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
Servings: Makes 1 1/2 cups

Ingredients:

1 can chickpeas, drained
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup tahini
4 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp paprika, plus more for serving
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
5 tbsp Frank’s Red Hot
1 tbsp white vinegar
2 tsp olive oil, plus more for serving

Directions:

1. Combine all ingredients except olive oil in a food processor.  Process until smooth.

2. Gradually add olive oil while processing until hummus reaches desired consistency.

3. Refrigerate until ready to serve.  Sprinkle with paprika and drizzle with olive oil.  Serve with pita chips and celery sticks.

Roasted Garlic White Bean and Red Pepper Dip

Published April 21, 2013 by jenmatteson

Another recipe from Jaida at Sweet Beginnings.¬† That girl just makes so many yummy things!¬† I’ve had this in my “to try” list for awhile now, and had the perfect opporutniy to try it out.¬† We had Nate’s parents over for ribs (in Nate’s new smoker!) last weekend, and I didn’t want anything really heavy to set out as an appetizer before we ate dinner.¬† I figured we’d all be excited and trying to save room for the ribs!

Roasted Garlic White Bean and Red Pepper DIp

This white bean dip was the perfect snack before dinner.¬† I loved the fact that it had an entire head of roasted garlic – you can never go wrong with roasted garlic!¬† The original recipe calls for 1 cup of cannelini beans and 3 scallions.¬† After adding everything to the food processor, I thought the rosemary and scallions were far too over powering.¬† Good thing I got two cans of beans instead of one.¬† I ended up adding two cans of cannellini beans, but for me the scallion taste still was¬†overpowering.¬† I did use fairly large scallions, so maybe that’s why.¬† Next time, I’ll only add a little at a time¬†and taste as I go.¬† Lesson learned.¬† Overall, I still loved the dip, but I certainly wouldn’t plan to be making out with Adam Levine after noshing on it ūüėȬ† It’d be a great spread on a turkey or veggie sandwich, too!

Roasted Garlic White Bean and Red Pepper Dip

Roasted Garlic White Bean and Red Pepper Dip

Source: Adapted from Sweet Beginnings
Servings: Makes about 2 cups

Ingredients:

1 garlic bulb
2 cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp olive oil
1-2 scallions, rough chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, rough chopped
1 1/2 tsp fresh rosemary
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Cut pointed end of the garlic bulb, exposing as many cloves as possible.  Drizzle generously with olive oil, wrap in foil, and roast until cloves are soft, about 40 minutes.

2. Remove from oven, open foil, and let cool slightly.  Squeeze cloves from skins into food processor.  Add beans, lemon juice, olive oil, red pepper, scallions rosemary and cayenne.  Puree until smooth.  (I suggest adding the scallions one at a time and testing the flavor as you add more).

3. Transfer to bowl and refrigerate until flavors have blended, at least one hour.

Roasted Garlic Hummus

Published June 4, 2012 by jenmatteson

I usually make a roasted red pepper hummus, but I thought I’d change it up a little this time and use roasted garlic. ¬†Roasting garlic is so super easy, and even if you think you don’t like garlic, try it. ¬†It completely changes the flavor profile, almost sweet. ¬†It gave the hummus just a hint of flavor, but much better than just plain. ¬†This is great for crackers, bread, pita, veggies, and even spreading on sandwiches and burgers.

Roasted Garlic Hummus

Source: Pigzilla Original
Servings: 20

Ingredients:

1 12 oz can garbanzo beans, drained, with water reserved
1/4 cup tahini paste
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil
1 head of roasted garlic, cloves removed from skins
kosher salt

Directions:

1. In a food processor, process garbanzo beans until smooth.  Add water from the can to smooth consistency, about 2 tbsp.  Add tahini paste and lemon juice.  While processing, add olive oil slowly until mixture reaches desired consistency.  Add roasted garlic cloves and process until completely smooth.  Add kosher salt to taste.  Sprinkle with paprika and a drizzle of olive oil before serving.

Caramelized Onion Dip

Published June 4, 2012 by jenmatteson

This is another dip I made for my wine exchange.  This recipe comes from Nicole from Prevention RD, and as always, it was amazing.  It really blew me away how good it was.  Nate and I love top the tater (guilty pleasure Рso we almost never buy it), but this dip will win out every time.  Wow, it is so good.  I made Nate try it as soon as he got home and he agreed!

It takes some time, as you have to caramelize the onions, but besides that, it’s really easy. ¬†Plus, you can do other things while your onions are cooking. ¬†I want to have this dip in my house everyday…though I think that might not be too good for my waistline ūüėČ

The only thing I would change the next time I make this is to cut my onions just a little smaller. ¬†I didn’t get a chance to take a picture of the dip before my party, so the picture looks a little skimpy, only because there was almost none left. ¬†It’s that good!

Caramelized Onion Dip

Source: Prevention RD
Servings: 20

Ingredients:

1 large yellow onion or 2 medium
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
4 oz reduced fat cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp plain non-fat Greek yogurt (sour cream will work too)
1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise

Directions:

1. Chop onions.  Heat butter over medium heat in large skillet and add onions, cayenne, salt and pepper and saute for 10 minutes.  Reduce heat to low, and cook for another 15-20 minutes.  Onions should have a deep brown color and be very soft.  Set aside and let cool.

2. Combine cream cheese, yogurt, and mayonnaise in a medium bowl (stand mixer would work well, but I did this by hand).  Mix until smooth.  Add onions and taste to adjust salt and/or pepper.  Serve immediately, or chill and serve later.  Dip should be served at room temperature.

Cilantro-Dill Vegetable Dip

Published June 4, 2012 by jenmatteson

While at the grocery store, veggie dip was on my list for my upcoming wine exchange. ¬†As I browsed my options, usually opting for something light (not fat-free because those don’t have a lot of flavor) and on sale. ¬†Unfortunately, neither of those options were available to me. ¬†So I decided to make my own dip so I can have complete control over what goes in it, plus this way, I’ll actually recognize the ingredient list.

This dip packs a lot of punch, but for little fat. ¬†Using Greek yogurt instead of sour cream gives the dip even more of a tangy zip. ¬†Try making it for your next party; you probably have most things already in your kitchen, and it seriously takes less than 5 minutes. ¬†Because it just means so much more when you make it from scratch ūüôā

Cilantro-Dill Vegetable Dip

Source: Adapted from Delicious Obsessions

Ingredients:

1 cup plain non-fat Greek yogurt
2 tbsp low-fat mayonnaise
1/4 cup buttermilk
2 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
2 tbsp fresh chopped chives
1 tsp fresh dill
1/4 cup cilantro
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

1. Add all ingredients to food processer.  Process until smooth.

Chipotle Mayonnaise

Published April 30, 2012 by jenmatteson

I should have made this with my food processor, but I was too lazy to get it out and clean it (mostly just the cleaning it part).  Next time though, I definitely will to get the chipotle chopped much finer.  The taste was still amazing though, and I want to have an entire jar of this in my refrigerator at all times (that might be worth getting the food processor out for)!

Chipotle Mayonnaise

Source: Pigzilla Original
Servings: 8

Ingredients:

1/2 cup Miracle Whip (or Mayo, whichever you prefer)
2 chipotle chilies in adobo, seeded and minced
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp dijon mustard
salt and pepper

Directions:

1. In a small bowl, combine all ingredients.¬† Seriously, that’s it!

Spicy Guacamole

Published March 17, 2012 by jenmatteson

A request from my big brother for my blog was my guacamole. ¬†Guacamole can be so easy, yet everyone likes it a little different. ¬†Don’t be afraid to experiment with what you like and omit what you don’t like. ¬†Get creative! ¬†A couple friend of ours once used sun-dried tomatoes because that’s all they had on hand. ¬†I was a bit skeptical at first, but it was actually really good! ¬†Consistency preference often differs; I prefer a little more chunky guacamole, but some like it very smooth and creamy. ¬†If you are the later, try using your food processor for mixing.

The key to whatever kind of guacamole you like is using perfect avocados. ¬†I’ve made some bad guacamole in the past, and it can all be traced back to the avocados. ¬†My best advice is to buy your avocados sooner rather than later. ¬†I’ve had the problem in the past where none of the avocados at the store were ripe, and I had to make the guacamole that day. ¬† At that point, I should have diverted to Plan B; it was too late. ¬†But I went ahead with it anyway. ¬†The result is a really chunky guacamole, with large pieces of under-ripe avocado and raw flavors as they don’t have a vehicle to marry them.

Instead, if you can buy your avocados at least a day in advance, you have a chance! ¬†If they are not quite ripe, put them in a brown paper bag and they should be much better the next day. ¬†If they are already ripe, put them in your crisper in the fridge until you are ready to use them. ¬†This will prevent them from becoming over-ripe and mushy. ¬†You can tell your avocado is ripe if you can gently press on the skin and leave a finger imprint. ¬†If you pick up the avocado and it feels more like a beanbag with an alligator skin, put it back – you can’t save this one!

This recipe is enough for a small party and a little on the spicy side. ¬†Omit one jalapeno if you don’t care so much for the heat. ¬†It’ll last in the fridge for about 3-4 days, but start turning brown after about a day. ¬†Don’t worry, it’ll still taste good even though it’s a little off-color. ¬†It’s just the oxidation of the avocado. ¬†Enjoy and please invite me to the party you’ll be serving this at; I’d love to try your own version!

Guacamole

Ingredients:

4 ripe avocados
1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped (I frequently use yellow onion because that’s what I have on hand)
2 jalapenos, seeded and finely chopped
1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped
3 tbsp fresh lime juice
2 tsp cumin
1/2 tbsp kosher salt
1 medium tomato, cored and chopped

Directions:
1. Slice avocados in half, remove pit.  Score inside of avocado lengthwise, then across.  In a large bowl, scoop out inside of avocados.  Using the back side of a fork, mash avocados to just shy of desired consistency.
2. Mix in onion, jalapeno, cilantro, lime juice, cumin, and salt.  Mix all ingredients together until it forms desired consistency.  Add tomatoes and serve.

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