Culinary Quest #16 – Tuscan White Bean Dip

In a season when my heart is hungry for meaningful memories and moments in our crazy life, I can’t forget there are five hungry stomachs in our home, too! On the cusp of Fall, I think of soups and breads and hot crisps, slumps, dumps, grunts and cobblers.

I also think about dear friends who often gather to enjoy cold nights and warm conversation by the fire. The noise, laughter and mayhem in our home is always welcomed. To kick things off, a good dinner party needs a great starter.

Today, I’m offering up my own version of Dean & Deluca’s white bean dip. Wait! Before you think of creamy garbonzo bean dips (a.k.a. hummus) – this is not that dip at all. It’s a whole bean dip cradled on a baguette.

White beans (navy beans) are high in protein and fiber and are an extremely healthy food. This recipe has no added salt and uses “good fat.” Gone are parties riddled with appetizer guilt before the dinner bell even rings. Then again, we love this dish in lieu of popcorn for family movie night. (I also sneak leftovers for lunch, shh.) Yum!

A huge difference between D&D’s recipe and mine is that I add white balsamic vinegar. Makes all the difference in the world!

If you’re looking for a sophisticated, super savory, healthy appetizer that goes far beyond cheese and crackers (or a fatty, heavy apps smothered with mayo or sour cream) this it is. Bonus time saver – make this a day ahead. Done!

Inexpensive, healthy, quick and bursting with flavor – sounds like a great time to me!

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Tuscan White Bean Dip

(makes about 4 1/2 cups)

32 oz white (navy) beans, canned – drained & rinsed

4T red onion, finely diced

4T fresh tomatoes, finely chopped (use jarred sun-dried tomatoes for an even more savory taste)

4T fresh basil, finely chopped

2t dried oregano

2 cloves minced garlic

4T extra virgin olive oil

4T white balsamic vinegar

1/4t black pepper (optional)

Directions:

Toss all ingredients together and refrigerate overnight or at least several hours to marinate. Salute!

 

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