I’m not heavily into making lunch at weekends, preferring to graze on leftovers, tuck into a bowl of cereal (I hope my mum isn’t reading this), or munch on veggie sticks and a bowl of homemade dip. As someone who always has tinned chick peas and tahini in the pantry, my go-to dip is clearly hummus, but sometimes you just need to go off-brand with a whole new type of dip. My current loves are a roasted capsicum number packed with heady spices, and a creamy mint-scented beetroot variety.
Rather than the tahini used in traditional hummus, the capsicum and beetroot dips are packed with walnuts and cashews respectively. I like to err on the side of chunky with the capsicum dip by pulsing the walnuts separately in the food processor and adding them later, while the beetroot dip seems to work best when the cashews are blended through with the rest of the ingredients until lovely and creamy.
Both are incredibly delicious served with aforementioned veggies as a snack or starter, or spread over sourdough and topped with goats cheese and some chopped roasted almonds. Best of all, they can be made with tinned capsicums and beetroots, or you can take your time making them both from scratch by roasting the veggies yourself. These recipes make plenty for a few days of idle snacking, or will feed a crowd as part of a pre-dinner mezze plate.
To make the roasted capsicum dip, briefly pulse 120g of walnuts in a food processor until rubble-like and set aside in another bowl. Throw 225g of roasted red capsicums, 50g breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, a tablespoon of lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of pomegranate molasses, 2 teaspoons of ground cumin, 2 teaspoons of smoked paprika, a small red chilli, and a crushed garlic clove or two into the processor and blend until smooth, then season with salt, pepper and more molasses as needed. Transfer to a bowl and stir through the walnut before serving.
For the beetroot dip, pulse 115g of roasted unsalted cashews, 350g of roasted beetroots, a tablespoon of lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, a handful of chopped mint two cloves of garlic and blend until well-combined. Season with salt and pepper before serving.