Back in the olden days of yore, when I began eating a bit healthier, hummus became a major part of my meal plans. I spread it on pita. I ate it with vegetables. I sculpted it into the likeness of Alec Baldwin. Tasty and inexpensive, it provided valuable fiber and protein, as well as a substantial stand-in for richer, dairy-filled dips.
However, I've been experimenting with other legumes lately. It's not that hummus has fallen out of favor. It's just a big, bean-filled world out there, and I aim to actualize its full dip potential.
This Black Bean Dip comes from RecipeZaar, which is a fairly reliable resource, provided you stick to dishes rated at least four-and-a-half stars. While almost entirely fat-free, the dip is rich and hearty, with a nice kick. Fresh scallions and lime juice keep it lively, even though it's made largely of pantry ingredients.
Admittedly, it's not the most attractive dip in the world; and for what could be the first time, that has nothing to do with my ability to take a decent food photo. But appearance doesn't necessarily coincide with flavor, right? I mean, I think we can all agree that baba ghanoush looks like baby puke, and squid ink pasta is essentially a Tim Burton set decoration.
Despite the aesthetics, it remains pretty dang delicious. Serve some before a Mexican feast or as part of your office lunch. You'll be sated/happy either way, and it might make you forget about hummus. (At least for a little while, anyway.)
Black Bean Dip
Makes about 2 cups dip.
Adapted from RecipeZaar.
- 2 cups canned black beans, drained and rinsed
- 4 teaspoons tomato paste
- 3 tablespoons water
- 2 medium cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 scallions, green parts chopped
- 2 tablespoons canned green chilies, chopped
Combine beans, tomato paste, water, garlic, lime juice, cumin, salt, and cayenne in a food processor. Puree until it reaches a dip-like consistency. If you find it's lacking something, add more. (I like a lot of lime juice.) Pour into a bowl.
Add scallions and green chilies to dip. Stir thoroughly to combine. Top with extra scallions and a few lime wedges. Serve with pita chips or vegetables.