Tuesday, August 28, 2007

white bean roasted red pepper dip


Today is Alex and my second anniversary.

Some longtime readers might remember that Alex and I met through our blogs–yes, we both used to whine publicly about our laughably bad dating lives and, yes, are really glad that phase has passed. Some newer readers might demand to know why they haven’t been privy to this information and the truth is, though Alex and I have been together for almost three years, I still haven’t found a non-awkward way to say “We met on the internet.” What usually happens is that I try to reduce my own discomfort with the way it must sound by, well, making it sound much worse: “In a chat room!” I’ll add, and then “About kittehs!” and then “No, wait! About polyandry!” Once big mouth strikes again, I can’t shut her up and I talk myself into a deeper and deeper hole: “Just kidding! We met on JDate!” “I mean, through friends!” “Uh, at summer camp!” Without fail, just as my blathering really hits rock-bottom–“Actually, he was stalking me. Isn’t that cute?”–it hits me that the truth, well, it might actually be better than the alternative.


Especially because, if you want to be technical about it, we met because of a recipe. Yep, it turns out that this whole thing I do, “Baby, how does this [obviously-awesome] recipe sound?” and this thing that he does, “Holy moly,” goes back to even before I knew he’d make a handsome dishwasher/heavy groceries-carrier/husband one day. I was swooning over moving into a new apartment with an actual kitchen counter, which had inspired me to make a white bean/roasted red pepper dip before a party the night before. Alex asked for the recipe, I dished it up, we moved the conversation to email, to a bar, over to Paris and then down the aisle, and well, in the words of Alex during the early are-we-going-to-make-a-go-of-this-or-what days, “that pretty much brings us up to today.”

Or yesterday, to be precise, when I decided to actually try that recipe which I’d pretty much made up as I went along and had no confirmation that the results were repeatable. [Fortunately, though I was predictably slow to “get it,” it wasn’t really the recipe that Alex really interested in.] Lucky me, it’s just perfect.

white bean roasted red pepper dip

By the way, Alex’s response to the recipe was: “Thanks. That sounds relatively simple. I don’t have a food processor or a hand-mixer, though. I guess I’ll have to cave and buy one or the other, eventually.” Hoo boy, did he ever.

One year ago: You Won’t Be Single For Long Vodka Cream Pasta

White Bean Roasted Red Pepper Dip

Tired of dips that were nothing but cream and egregious amounts of dairy fat, and bored by all of the white bean dips out there that were nothing but bean-swapped hummus, this has got to be one of the first recipes I ever created. Low-fat and or fat-free cream cheese work equally well in here, as does goat cheese or mascarpone. A sprinkle of chives makes it even prettier, but it will disappear quickly, with or without them.

1 15-ounce can of white cannelini or navy beans, drained and rinsed
1 small jar roasted red peppers, or about 1 cup, drained
3 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 clove garlic, minced
Juice from half a lemon
Salt and pepper to taste

Puree everything in a food processor until smooth. Bachelors, your margarita blender will work, too.

Serve with baked pita chips.


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