If you want to make your regular white bean dip more exciting for Valentine’s Day, this is the recipe for you. Adding a roasted beet to white bean dip transforms a plain old beige dip to a magical magenta adventure for your crudités.
The UN has declared 2016 the year of the pulse. Pulses, also known as beans and legumes, have been an important part of traditional diets in Africa, Asia, and Latin America for centuries. As an economical and environmentally-friendly source of protein, eating pulses can help get us closer to a more sustainable, plant-based diet. (Pulses are also one of Canada’s best crops, making eating a little daily pulse intake a pretty sustainable thing.)
Roasted beets are rich in folate, as well as the electrolyte minerals potassium, sodium, and magnesium, which are essential for fluid balance. And beets were also reportedly used as an aphrodisiac in ancient Greece. You could call them vegetable Viagra – nitrates in beets naturally increase nitric oxide, the chemical responsible for increased blood flow to you-know-where.
Then there’s the immune-boosting garlic and lemon juice, and antioxidant-rich thyme, which don’t have much to do with Valentine’s Day, but help to keep you healthy and happy throughout the winter.
Use this dip as a magical magenta adventure for your crudités, in place of mashed potatoes, alongside a piece of roasted chicken, or anywhere you’d use hummus, on a rice or quinoa bowl or as a sandwich spread.
- 1 can white beans (buy Eden Organic, as cans are BPA-free), rinsed and drained
- 1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
- 1 small roasted beet, cooled, peeled, and roughly chopped
- ½ lemon, juiced 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme (reserve a few whole sprigs for garnish)
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil sea salt and pepper, to taste
- Whiz all ingredients in a food processor until smooth and magenta-hued.
- Scrape into a bowl. Using the back of a spoon, make a few grooves and ridges on the surface of the dip. Drizzle some nice olive oil overtop and decorate with a small handful of whole thyme sprigs.
- Serve with plenty of cut up green and white veggies to make the magenta pop. Kohlrabi, raw parsnips, snap peas and endive leaves would be beautiful, as would Chioggia (red and white) beets.
Happy Valentine’s Day. xo Andrea